Uganda

Makerere University orders sacked lecturers to refund salaries

Makerere University
Makerere University Vice Chancellor, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe (right), addressing the media at Makerere Thursday. PHOTO | NMG 

Kampala

Uganda's Makerere University Vice-Chancellor Prof Barnabas Nawangwe Thursday asked the sacked lecturers who had absconded from duty to return the public funds they received for no work done.

The university on December 22, 2018 fired 45 teaching staff from the university for absconding duty, failure to complete studies, financial fraud and insubordination, among others.

Addressing a news conference at Makerere University, Prof Nawangwe said the management was going to officially write to the staff who absconded from work but continued receiving salary from the university.

“All those staff we continued paying our money yet they had left the university should refund it. We cannot tolerate staff working elsewhere and earning from us without any service rendered,” Prof Nawangwe said.

The university director legal, Mr Henry Mwebe, who was also present at the press conference, said the university is going to use the legal means to recover the money it spent on the sacked staff.

The university bursar is expected to compute how much those staff should refund to government.

Fair hearing
Meanwhile, Prof Nawangwe explained that in the sacking of errant lecturers, the appointments board acted within the confines of the law and that all the affected staff were given the opportunity for a fair hearing.

He said the aggrieved staff can appeal to the staff tribunal.

He also vowed to punish staff members who speak ill about the university in public without permission of the university.

However, some sacked staff have petitioned parliament citing irregularities in the process. The Speaker Rebecca Kadaga is expected to meet them Friday.

Prof Nawangwe castigated the sacked lecturers for skipping the staff tribunal.

He, however, indicated that the university management was ready to defend the decision they took if invited to parliament.

The chairperson of Makerere university academic staff association, Mr Deus Kamunyu, okayed the process in which the university would regain the money it lost to staff.

“We are aware that some staff who absconded from duty were being paid money for over four years so if the university wants to force those people to refund the money, we cannot go against it. It’s a good move, “Mr Kamunyu said.

He advised Prof Nawangwe to stop castigating the staff from petitioning the Minister of Education.