Visit of UEM General Secretary
On Thursday 11th January 2018, the UEM General Secretary Rev Volker Martin Dally and Rev. Dr. Muke Nagaju, UEM Deputy Executive Secretary-Africa, visited PIASS, Huye Campus. They were well welcomed by PIASS’s Vice Chancellor, Rev. Prof. Elisée Musemakweli, and Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academics, Rev. Prof Viateur Ndikumana and teaching and administrative staff members.
The Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academics (DVCA) presented to the Visitors the extent to which PIASS is accomplishing its mission through teaching, research and services to the community.
He made an emphasis on the success of the project supported by UEM and commended further collaboration. Upon the challenges presented by DVCA, the UEM General Secretary urged PIASS management to put much effort on prioritization of needs and explore many opportunities around PIASS. During further discussions, the General Secretary reminded the continued cooperation with PIASS through its founder member churches and indicated to PIASS management the possibility to enlarge the cooperation with regard to academics through UEM University members.
The General Secretary was very much critical on the utilization of cooperation opportunities available to Higher learning institutions, where a number of universities do not explore at the fullest available opportunities, such as exchange of programmes, exchange of teachers, exchange of students, etc.
The UEM is willing to facilitate such collaboration among UEM member universities but any university willing to participate is advised to be clear with the need specification, outcomes to the institution itself and to the community. With regard to the UEM scholarships, the General Secretary explicitly indicated the firm UEM commitment to support women scholarship compared to that of male candidates. In the same line, Rev. Dr. Muke Nagaju challenged PIASS community to promote women as it is to men from family, school, church and country level. She wondered why past hindrances are continuing to affect the promotion of women in protestant churches despite several meetings, conferences, communication, recommendations, and agreements with church leaders and elders on gender equality and affirmative action to restore the consequences of the past on women. She called the members of the Faculty of Theology to investigate those contextual factors beyond what is already known and come up with feasible recommendations.
In his word, the PIASS’s Vice Chancellor appreciated the genuine collaboration with UEM, especially the offer of scholarship to PIASS’s staff and project funding among others. He guaranteed the effective use of scholarship beneficiaries for the development of PIASS and their respective churches. With regard to community projects, he emphasized the PIASS’s commitment to serve Churches in different domains for the promotion of holistic development. In his concluding remarks, the General secretary thanked PIASS management for smooth collaboration and indicated UEM commitment to support its community members in its capacity and as a need be.