Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Dr Isaac Wanzige Magoola, a senior lecturer at Makerere University Business School –MUBS has been suspended for alleged use of abusive language.
Dr Magoola, who has been the acting Makerere University Business Academic Staff Association –MUBASA will be away on half-pay effective this month, according to a suspension letter signed by MUBS principal Professor Wasswa Balunywa.
The suspension came two days after Magoola’s dismissal from the position of the Dean, Faculty of Entrepreneurship and Business Administration, a position he has occupied since July 1, 2018. In the letter justifying his removal from the position, Balunywa stated that it was unacceptable for Magoola as a member of MUBS management to continue acting as the academic staff association chairperson.
“You will appreciate that as Principal, I have no business in election and appointment of the leadership of MUBASA. Your letter makes your position as Dean of Faculty untenable and shows a conflict of interest,” Balunywa said, before referring the matter to the Appointments Board.
This letter, however, prompted Dr Magoola to author a three-page-response to the principal and the chairperson of the Appointments Board describing his removal as null and void. He said the letter suspending him from the position of Dean of Faculty was not only illegal but inconsequential.
Magoola cited that Balunywa was not his appointing authority and that he was not legally a principal of MUBS since his term as Principal expired and he had never been officially put through the established competitive process. “I am a Senior Lecturer with a right to associate under MUBASA which entitles me to vote and be voted, and an academic staff with a right to vote and be voted for in such leadership positions provided I qualify,” Dr Magoola said.
You have in the past attacked me personally, my family and members in the school community. I find this conduct unacceptable,” Professor Balunywa says in his letter. He added that he was not the first or last to lead a staff association as well as serve management, yet all the previous leaders were never dismissed.
Previously, Dr Annet Nabatanzi, Dr Akampumuza, and Dr Arthur Ahimbisibwe were chairpersons as well as members of MUBS management committee. The current executive of the association has Dr Isaac Nkote Dr Stephen Nkundabanyanga and Dr Kitui Mayoka, who are also members of the university management.
“It is clear that you have singled me out for victimization following a personal vendetta you have waged against me for many years because of my knack to always point out your nakedness, evidenced by my insistence on a forensic human resource audit,” Dr Magoola stated.
Following the response, Balunywa said he was left with no choice but to suspend Magoola from the School service for gross misconduct, demeaning his personality and that of the president, the Principal’s Appointing Authority.
“There is a need for order in the School and your continuous incitement of staff must be brought to its logical conclusion,” Prof. Balunywa’s letter to Magoola reads.
However, Magoola is now seeking the intervention of the appointing authority in the alleged abuses at Makerere University Business School, which he says threaten to ruin the leading business school.
In the petition dated August 13, Magoola sought that the president orders for a forensic Human Resource Audit at the school citing there were more than 200 underpaid academic staff whose salaries have not been enhanced due to management omissions.
“The academic staff through their association have engaged the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Public Service and the Secretary to the Treasury on the same matter and have also laid down tools twice in June 2018 and currently from July 2019,” he pointed out and added that instead of solving the problem, management is threatening to lay off over 200 underpaid academic staff who were confirmed in school service on permanent terms.