A week after its main administration block got burnt, Makerere University has received a $1m offer from Mastercard Foundation to help rebuild the iconic building at Uganda's biggest university.
This development was confirmed by the Vice-Chancellor Prof Barnabas Nawangwe through his official twitter handle.
"I am overwhelmed by the great show of solidarity by the Mastercard Foundation in rebuilding our damaged iconic and historic administration building through a pledge of 1 Million US Dollars (Shs3.7 billion). Makerere is immensely grateful for this generous contribution," Prof Nawangwe said in the tweet.
According to a September 25, letter to Makerere University's Vice-Chancellor, the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Mastercard Foundation Roy Reeta said, "I was saddened to learn about the fire at Makerere University and the extensive damage to the iconic main building."
"Thankfully, there were no injuries or loss of life. You do not need more challenges during a time you are leading the university and your teams through a global pandemic as well as preparing to receive medical and final year students in mid-October. Our hearts go out to you."
He added: "We understand the efforts to repair and rebuild as well as recover records are considerable. To assist with these efforts, the Foundation would like to provide $1m in support to Makerere University."
Reeta added, "We hope this contribution expedites the reopening of the university and builds resiliency as Makerere continues to educate our future leaders. My colleague Samuel will be in touch with further details," he wrote.
At least Shs20 Billion needed
Meanwhile, Prof Nawangwe estimates that at least Sh20 billion will be required if the burnt main building at Makerere is to be put back in shape.
The burnt building, according to Prof Nawangwe is valued at Shs 15.4 billion by the chief government valuer.
Its restoration, Nawangwe believes, will definitely cost more since the building will be restored with a few changes putting new technology into consideration.
While appearing on UBC's Behind the Headlines talk show on Wednesday, Prof Nawangwe said that restoring the building could cost up to Shs20 billion.
Makerere University's main building caught fire last week Saturday night with most of the roof and most top floors suffering serious damage.
The cause of the fire has not been established yet although the police say several CCTV footage has been recovered to aid the investigations.