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Makerere University Council Directs Fresh Search for Deputy Vice Chancellor

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Early this month, Civil Division High Court Judge, Musa Sekaana issued an order, directing the Makerere University management to furnish it with the progress as per its direction, within only two weeks to prove that there was an ongoing process of selecting a substantive leader.
Lorna Magara, the Makerere University Council Chairperson
Makerere University council has tasked the Senate to conduct a fresh search for the Deputy Vice Chancellor in Charge of Finance and Administration-DVC F&A.  The directive is line with resolutions from a Special Meeting held by the University Council last week.  

  A statement issued by the University Council shows that Consultations have been ongoing regarding the position following the annulment of the initial appointment by Court. And that “The University needed to advance the search process to another stage.” 

Early this month, Civil Division High Court Judge, Musa Sekaana issued an order, directing the Makerere University management to furnish it with the progress as per its direction, within only two weeks to prove that there was an ongoing process of selecting a substantive leader.  

  The decision stemmed from an application filed in December last year by Anthony Mugisha, a Professor of Veterinary Sciences and Socio-Economics in the College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources & Biosecurity (CoVAB) against the institution for contempt of court.  

Professor Mugisha’s application stemmed from a June 16th, 2019 High Court ruling that ordered a fresh search process for the office after court found flaws in the previous process. In the same ruling, Justice Ssekaana quashed the appointment of Professor William Bazeyo as Deputy Vice Chancellor in Charge of Finance and Administration and declared the post vacant.  

However, in a twist of events, Professor Bazeyo was reappointed in acting capacity by the University Chancellor, Professor Ezra Suruma, a position he has been occupying. Counsel Anthony Wameli, who represented Professor Mugisha, told URN on Tuesday that he hadn’t heard about the developments from the university council.

“We are going back to court tomorrow [Wednesday February 26, 2020]. I hope they will report that with evidence,” Wameli said.  In his application Wameli asked Court to issue arrest warrants against Prof. Suruma, the Vice-Chancellor Prof Barnabas Nawangwe, the University Council Chairperson Lorna Magara, and Acting University Secretary, Yusuf Kiranda and commit them to civil prison for contempt.    

In an email to staff on June 20, 2019, a few days after the court ruling, Professor Nawangwe, referred to the Court ruling as the “most unfortunate decision”. Adding that given the significance of the office and the lengthy period that the University would commence the appeal process, the Chancellor had directed Professor Bazeyo to revert to the same office. It is this email, that Counsel Wameli has argued in Court that the Vice Chancellor, himself was biased against the court decision.

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