"The University's bigger vision of getting competent staff that is ready to work is ongoing
Betty Amamukirori
Journalist @ New vision
"The university's bigger vision of getting competent staff that is ready to work is ongoing."

KAMPALA - Five days after firing its top academic staff, tycoon Sudhir Ruparelia's Kampala-based Victoria University is searching for a quick replacement for the five faculty deans.

In an advertisement put up in several local media outlets, the university is seeking to recruit the dean of faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, faculty of Business and Management, faculty of Science and Technology, faculty of Health Sciences and faculty of Law.

According to the advertisement, the persons seeking to fill in these positions are to start working as soon as possible and will undergo a six months' probation period. The university is promising an attractive package which will be according to its terms and conditions.

Joseph Nyakana, the University's acting Vice Chancellor, told New Vision that apart from putting up announcements in the various local media outlets, they have also outsourced the search for human resource to international agents in India, United Kingdom and South Africa.

"The University's bigger vision of getting competent staff that is ready to work is ongoing and since the institutional is an international one, we have also outsourced the search to international agents such that we strike a balance in staffing," he said.

On October 31, the university's top staff, deans and heads of department, agreed to lay down their tools, effective November 1, after the institutions' governing council allegedly failed to respond to several grievances they had laid before it.

Some of the grievances include delayed payment of their salaries and overtake of the running of the university's daily activities by Rajiv Ruparelia, son to the business mogul, which they said contravenes the Universities and Other Tertiary Institutions Act.

In response, the university relieved the striking staff of their duties and responsibilities and immediately replaced Dr. Francis Waiswa, the acting Vice Chancellor and Dean of Business and Management and replaced him with Nyakana.

David Matovu, the varsity council chair in his notice to all staff and students, stated that the decision to dismiss the striking staff was because they breached their contract of employment which included notifying the university of their intention to strike.

Among those fired were Dr. Patience Muwanguzi, dean of Public Health, Maximus Byamukama, dean of science and technology, Dr. Martha Kibuuka-Musoke, dean of humanities and social sciences and Dr. Drake Kyalimpa, head of oil and gas department.

Commenting about the status of the institution, Rajiv said there is normalcy in the university, lectures are ongoing and it is only the deans that are missing.

He said they are planning to meet with National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) to discuss the fate of the fired deans and heads of department.