Datamine Technical School Tutors Protest Overdue Salaries

By Davis Buyondo


Tutors at Datamine Technical Business School (DTBS), Masaka branch,
have laid down tools demanding overdue salaries.

The protest started at the beginning of the second semester on 29th
July claiming salary arrears of more than two years. Others claim one
year, while a few demand four months.

Led by Jude Matovu, the tutors want the concerned administrators to
process their payment before the end of this month in order to resume

Affected tutors say the only way to catch the directors’ attention was
through a protest.

According to the tutors, the arrears (all together) amount to over
shs65 million in a period of more than three years. Even the daily
allowance of shs20,000 was phased out last year which propelled the

They say they are not paid uniform salaries. Some are paid between
shs350,000, shs400,000 and shs500,000.

Maurice Matovu, the former head of Journalism department, quit in June
demanding shs4m in salary and allowances. Winnie Nalubowa, who heads
the department of hairdressing and cosmetology plus five others left a
few weeks later.

Matovu further explains that they petitioned Masaka Labour Office for
intervention but the matter was ignored.

 According to him, the labour office referred them to the Industrial Court
in Kampala for redress. The Industrial court provides a platform for
people to equitably express their labour grievances.

It further facilitates decent productive work and better living
standards to the people through timely arbitration of labour disputes
within the country.

However, Matovu recounts, they could not afford good lawyers to take
up their case as well as facilitate themselves throughout the process
hence remaining helpless.

This is not the first time for workers the troubled institution to
protest. Last year, sizeable number teachers laid down their tools
over the same demands but the concerned administrators convinced them
back to work.

In May 2018, the staff petitioned Irene Nakijjoba, the officer in
charge of Masaka District Labour, Employment and Industrial Relations
affairs, to intervene and address their concerns.

When contacted about the ongoing protest, MP Mpuuga declined to
comment on the matter and referred us to Daniel Jagwe, the
institution’s Deputy Academic Registrar.

According to Jagwe, he is not aware of the protest adding that the
tutors were working something the students disproved.

However, the students argue that they are being cheated yet they paid
their tuition in time.

Affected students disclosed that five out of 25 tutors were persuaded
to stay but the rest have since deserted the school.

Students say that they are currently in a dilemma due to the tutor’s
absence. they add, the remaining tutors have also threatened to quit.

However, they further want immediate intervention of the concerned
administrators and

Another student, who declined to be named, fearing reprimand by the
administrators, says they are organising a strike to demonstrate their

As a result, students hang around the premises while others roam
around town to pass time.

Moses Muwulya, an alumnus, argues that the institution’s image will be
tarnished once the directors fail to resolve such longstanding

 According to the cooks -Paul Lule,33, and his wife Madinah Nassali,
29, the only way to silence those who persistently demand their pay is
to frame them for crimes they did commit.

The couple was arrested last month and detained for several days for
allegedly stealing a desktop computer.

Shortly after getting police bond, the couple told local reporters
that they were framed by Vianny Ndugga (institute’s overseer) for
demanding their wages for a period of one year.

They allege that Ndugga had kept the store keys for several days when
the said computer was stolen.

However, Ndugga denied the accusations.   Meanwhile, one of the top
administrators says they are holding meetings to chat way forward to
addressing the matter.

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