Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Makerere University Academic Staff Association-MUASA has protested a decision by the university management to summon four members for participating in an industrial action last year.
The members of staff include; Dr. Fred Maniragaba, Dr. Anthony Tibaingana from the College of Business and Management, Francis Ekwaro, and Ezerea Kulisooma from the College of Computing and Information System.
Last year lecturers in public universities including Makerere, Kyambogo, Busitema, Mbarara, and Gulu University among others organized a sit-down strike demanding salary enhancement.
The academic staff demanded that the government releases 129.24 Billion Shillings to effect the enhancement of salaries of lecturers in all public universities following a presidential directive in 2015.
Following the government decision to implement the salary increment in phases for five years, in the 2020/2021 financial year, only professors and associate professors got their 100 percent salary increment.
The lecturers were surprised to receive letters dated March 15, 2022, from the Directorate of Human Resources at Makerere summoning them to appear before the appointments board.
A copy of one of the letters obtained by URN indicated that the members of staff are being charged with neglect of official duty.
“The Director Human Resource has charged you with; The offenses of refusal, negligence or omitting to perform one’s official duties and/ or discharge official responsibilities duly assigned contrary to section 5.7(4) of the Makerere University Human Resources Manual 2009 as amended…,” noted Davis Malowa Ndanyi the Director of Human Resource.
The MUASA Chairperson Robert Kakuru has asked the university management to overturn its decision calling it unfair.
“The prosecution is being headed by the Director Human Resources, who is under the Vice-Chancellor. As you are aware, all Vice Chancellors of Public Universities were beneficiaries of the full salary enhancement of 20 from 12 Million Shillings which triggered an injustice that the staff resisted, leading to industrial action.
Milton Wabyona, the Public Relations Officer for MUASA, questioned why only four MUASA members were singled out.
One of the lecturers who was reprimanded expressed disappointment at the manner in which the university management is handling the matter.
During the industrial action, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe, the Vice-Chancellor directed the Directorate of Internal Audit to conduct a staff headcount.