The Principal, Prof. Waswa Balunywa, has stressed the need to review the country’s education sector because it has been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and which calls for a paradigm shift in the planning for the sector.

He also called upon Government to support the development of local technologies and innovations to achieve economic development in the ongoing fourth industrial revolution.

Prof. Waswa Balunywa

Prof. Balunywa made the call during a virtual National Development Symposium organized by the Global Foundation Uganda Peace in conjunction with Makerere University Business School (MUBS), under the theme “One Family under God: Peace and Socio-Economic Development critical for securing Uganda’s future.”

The symposium intended to launch a joint response and commitment to transform education, economy, and to strengthen a culture of peace, service, moral and innovative leadership for socialeconomic development.

He said if we are to improve the country’s education, there is need for a comprehensive review of the system aligning it to the technological changes across the globe.

He further advised that Primary Education should involve elementary technological skills while Secondary education should have more technical and vocational education.

Higher education should reflect the theoretical perspectives of the future primarily the innovations that may come, reflect the need for creativity and innovation in the key sectors of the economy, establish technological universities to translate ideas into products.

Prof. Balunywa, also emphasized that Uganda and other African countries cannot afford to lose out on the fourth industrial revolution.

The world has already embraced technological advancement with various forms already replacing human resource on some tasks, hence the need to change the education system and make it more technologybased.

“Government and all stakeholders should invest more in technology, embrace technology innovations and promote them so that they can be able to solve the questions of the day,” he said.

Prof. Balunywa cited five companies that are the biggest in the world, noting that they are technological based. With the world taking the ICT direction, our governments must prioritize technology development in all fields, including the education sector so that the youth can be the drivers to economic transformation after attaining technology-based education. He asked the Government to establish universities and higher institutions of learning aimed at promoting technology and innovation. Meanwhile, Amb. Milton Kambula, the chapter President of Global Peace Foundation, said embracing technology and technological innovations is the only way economies could survive the COVID-19 pandemic impact.

This is the time, for the country, to come together and seek solutions to the pressing issues affecting the education sector, health, economy and service delivery, among others. It is through embracing technology that we can get solutions to challenges affecting our economies. Kambula added that over the years, young creators have come up with good innovations but lack of support has seen them fail to take effect on the economy. He asked the Government to identify such innovations and support them so that they can be developed and commercialized for national advancement.

He said this can be achieved by introducing an education system that supports practical innovations to drive economic growth.