Makerere University has established a new policy that provides for the sacking of lecturers over drunkenness.
The policy, which seeks to boost academic standards, also requires lecturers to teach for a minimum of 10 hours a week and provide evidence that they carry out research.
It also bars them from conducting private consultancy work unless with permission from the second deputy vice-chancellor. Even then, the university retains 30% of the remuneration from the consultancy.
The lecturers will continuously be rated by both students and heads of department as a measure to check absenteeism which had affected the academic standards.
â€œTeaching refers to the preparation one makes, the actual imparting of knowledge to learners and evaluating their performance. This must be observed,â€ says the policy. It also calls on lecturers to timely mark course-work assignments and examinations, as well as counsel students.
Other misconducts that will lead to the sacking of lecturers include plagiarising studentsâ€™ or colleaguesâ€™ work, persistent late coming, participating in illegal strikes, tendencies of discrimination, forgery and embezzlement of university funds.
â€œBeing drunk at work, abuse of drugs, quarrelling and assault at work constitute a breach of conduct which shall call for disciplinary action against the employee,â€ the new policy states. The policy was drafted in November 2009 by the directorate of human resources and passed by the university council, the institutionâ€™s topmost administrative organ, early this year, according to a source.
It comes amid reports of academic, financial and administrative shortcomings by Makerere lecturers.
In 2008, the Inspectorate of Government suspended the appointment of Associate Professor Jockey Nyakaana over allegations that he plagiarised material from a masterâ€™s thesis of his student, Richard Drama, in order to receive sh26m for a post-doctoral research proposal. A probe was conducted but the case is yet to be disposed of.
Several other lecturers have been accused of offering female students free marks in exchange for sex and concentrating on consultancies outside the university instead of teaching and carrying out research.
However, sources yesterday reported a likely opposition from lecturers to some provisions in the new policy and said they would soon meet to discuss it.
Meanwhile, close to 15,000 out of the 36,878 continuing students failed to register before the date set by the institution. â€œThe registration exercise ended last week but only about half of the students registered,â€ an official in the registrarâ€™s department told The New Vision on Saturday.
Previously, students could register and pay tuition fees up to the last week of the semester.
However, vice-chancellor Prof. Venansius Baryamureeba announced this month that students had only two weeks to pay fees and register, after which the exercise will be closed.
Addressing a press conference at the start of this semester, Baryamureeba stressed that only those who will have paid full fees and registered by the second week of the semester will be given examination permits to sit for tests and examinations.
â€œAfter that deadline, no one will be allowed to register,â€ he said.
Makerere to sack drunk lecturers