11 February 2019

Uganda: Kabaasa Bounces Back On Makerere Appointments Board

Makerere University Council has once again appointed Bruce Balaba Kabaasa as a member of the university Appointments Board, the unit in charge of all staff appointments and admissions in the University.

Kabaasa will in addition head the University Council's Finance, Planning, Administration and Investment committee.

The new appointment was confirmed during a meeting held at Speke resort Munyonyo, on Friday, despite controversies surrounding Kabaasa's retention as a member of the university council.

He had earlier been accused of usurping the powers of the Director for Human Resources to promote corruption and nepotism by unfairly influencing recruitment processes.

Members of staff had rejected his latest reappointment to the university council over his alleged role in the arbitrary amendment of the Human Resources Manual and disregarding procedures in approving administrative structures, among several other reasons.

In a January petition to the Speaker of Parliament, the members of staff indicated that Kabaasa did not have credentials to be a member or chairperson of the Board citing that his only known employment has been a member of the council.

His appointment is also partly responsible for the current standoff at the university, since his rejection prompted actions that led to the suspension of key leaders in Staff Associations.

Those who have been suspended in the aftermath of the controversy include Bennet Magara and Joseph Kalema; both leaders of the Makerere Administrative Staff Association - MASA and Dr Deus Kamunyu Muhwezi, the Makerere University Academic Staff Association - MUASA chairperson. They were accused of misconduct and violation of the terms of their employment.

Meanwhile, the new Appointments Board will be headed by Jolly Uzamukunda Karabaya, the Ministry of Education and Sports representative to the Makerere Council.

Also on the Appointments Board lawyer Kiryowa Kiwanuka, the government Appointee to the council, Dr Umar Kakumba, the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Prof William Bazeyo, the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration.

Other members of this committee include Prof Barnabas Nawangwe, Jude Mbabaali, the Masaka District LCV Chairperson, Dr Sarah Ssali, the Dean School of Women and Gender Studies, Dr Winston Ireeta Tumps, the Head of Physics Department at Makerere and John Chris Ninsiima, the PWDs Representative.

Kiryowa Kiwanuka will also chair the Audit Committee while Dr Stephen Kagoda, the former permanent secretary in the Ministry of Internal Affairs who will now chair the Estates and works Committee. The Quality Assurance and Gender Committee of the council will be headed by former legislator Daniel Kidega.

Dr Fredrick Kitoogo, the Ministry of ICT, Representative was selected to head the Information and communications technology (ICT) committee while Assoc. Prof. Sarah Ssali will chair the committee in charge of Staff Development, welfare and retirement benefits.

Dr Helen Nambalirwa Nkabala was selected to head the Students Affairs Committee.

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