Embattled Copperbelt University Vice-Chancellor Prof. Naison Ngoma has asked unionised workers suspended by management to apologise for alleged gross misconduct.
Speaking from his residence, Prof. Ngoma says management was willing to open a new chapter of dialogue as long as unionised workers apologised for having locked him in his office when confusion engulfed the institution.
CBU unionized workers are demanding the removal of Prof. Ngoma for incompetence.
He said there was no need to take a destructive path as unionised workers were doing but the need to get together and find a common ground to allow for the smooth operations of the Copperbelt University.
"We had instituted disciplinary measures as an institution, which saw some people being asked to show cause why they should not be found wanting, that simple task became another subject of debate as some members of the University that received letters were told by their unions not to respond to the letters.
"There have been disagreements but that is for adjudication and not management, we are human being, we can make mistakes. Some letters were escalated to suspensions, management saw various things in the press painting management of being irresponsible," Prof. Ngoma said
He said, "I want to make an important statement in the period we are in a latent period; this is a period all of us to reflect by looking at their own lives and the institution. Therefore I am saying to you today that as management we will immediately drop charges for all affected. We are prepared but on one account that those ones who are responsible for urging members and themselves to be destructive to come to management and say they were wrong to take a disruptive process.
"I am not saying I as vice chancellor to back down in their demands, any demand they have made I have no desire to stop such a demand and am not in any position to stop.
"In the interest of the students it is important that those who have been propagating this instability let them come to management and let them say in clear and categorical terms that they were wrong to take this approach, this was a wrong way of doing things."
Meanwhile, Prof. Ngoma has vowed that protests by the unionised workers will not force him to resign or help resolve issues at the University.
Prof. Ngoma said unionised workers should reason with him and allow for dialogue to take place to avoid affecting the academic calendar as the institution is set to re-open.