Student representation and the relationship between student leaders and political Parties: The case of Makerere University
South African Journal of Higher Education
What are the characteristics and implications of the relationship between student leaders and national political parties in African universities? As the most prestigious university of Uganda, Makerere University represents a model case for investigating the involvement of political parties in student politics. Drawing on propositions adapted from Weinberg and Walker (1969), Schmitter and Streeck (1999) , and others, this article uses data generated by means of in-depth interviews and an online
... iews and an online survey to analyse the relationship between political parties and student leaders. It considers the reasons why student leaders and political parties establish a relationship; how it is maintained; and what its effects are on student leaders' ability to represent student interests. It finds that various kinds of resource exchange are key to understanding the relationship and considers its implications. The article concludes by recommending institutional interventions to curb the extent of resources that a party can provide to student leaders so as to contain the negative effects of the relationship while maintaining the potential for universities to act as 'training grounds' of democracy. Weinberg, I. and K. N. Walker. 1969. Student politics and political systems: Toward a typology. American Journal of Sociology 75(1): 77-96.