Secondary school learners during a virtual lesson. PHOTO/COURTESY

The National Curriculum Development Centre (NCDC) has hailed MTN Uganda for zero-rating websites for institutions of learning during the lockdown.

Mr Gilbert Gift Siima, the curriculum specialist in-charge of ICT at NCDC, says the initiative has enabled students who are at home to access learning materials during the lockdown.

This, he says, was especially helpful for candidates in the Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) and the Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE) who recently received their results.

Following the closure of schools during the first lockdown last year, MTN allowed free access to 17 learning sites in partnership with NCDC to ensure students study from home.

The learning sites include those of universities such as Makerere University, Uganda Christian University and Uganda Martyrs University.

According to Siima, the sites have continuously recorded increased traffic, an indication of increased usage amongst the learners.

He hails MTN for its efforts as a corporate citizen in enabling continuity of the education sector, which has been hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

MTN Uganda General Manager Corporate services and legal, Enid Edroma said the telecom is glad to have partnered with NCDC to support the people of Uganda.

“MTN is dedicated to continuously support the people of Uganda. We understand the vitality of education especially to the youngsters in the country, and as such thought it necessary to ensure that they remain focused and studying at no cost to the parents whose incomes have also been affected by the pandemic,” Edroma notes.

Over the last two years, schools have been closed twice to stem the rising covid-19 infections. The latest closure occurred in June 2021.

The learners are still at home and government is yet to release another school reopening plan.