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Varsity bosses plead with non-teaching staff

By Vision Reporter

Added 10th August 2015 11:37 PM

Following the ongoing strike by non-teaching staff across all public universities, Vice Chancellors have today Monday held an emergency meeting in which they implored them to resume work as they dialogue with the government.

Following the ongoing strike by non-teaching staff across all public universities, Vice Chancellors have today Monday held an emergency meeting in which they implored them to resume work as they dialogue with the government.

By Clare Muhindo

Following the ongoing strike by non-teaching staff across all public universities, Vice Chancellors have today Monday held an emergency meeting in which they implored them to resume work as they dialogue with the government.


The closed meeting was held at Makerere University.

Addressing the press after the meeting, Prof. John Ddumba Ssentamu, the vice Chancellor of Makerere University, who chaired the meeting said that University councils have agreed to meet in the course of this week, so as to decide the opening dates for the first semester.

“We support their cause, but not the sit down strike. We are appealing to them to return to work as we negotiate with the government about salary enhancement for the non-teaching staff,” Ddumba said.

Ddumba said that the Vice chancellors have agreed to support the workers as they negotiate with the government, in order to have order at the Universities.

However the defiant staff insisted that they will not work unless their salaries are enhanced. They want a salary enhancement as was done for the academics.

In the new academic staff salary structure, the salary of a professor was raised from Sh4m to Sh6m on average.

Jackson Betihama, the Chairperson of the Public Universities Non-teaching Staff Executives forum said that no university will operate before the enhancement is made.

“The academic staff that were enhanced are free to work, if they can access the facilities. We shall resume next financial year after the government has raised our salaries,” Betihama said.

Non-teaching staff made a proposal to the Vice Chancellors, during the meeting that the first semester of this academic year be closed until their salaries are enhanced. 

“We have asked government to dialogue with us, but there is nothing they have offered. They are just telling us that there is no money, yet we are seeing how money is being given out to some constituencies,” he said.
 
“It is unlawful to have salary disparities between academic staff and non-teaching staff. If the government thinks that Universities can be run by only the academic staff, then let them do so.”

The strike by non-teaching staff has paralyzed activities at public universities, including opening for the first semester of the new academic year.

First year students are still unable to pick their admission letters.

One student Damascus Kyakuwa who was admitted to BSc. Conservation Forestry says he has been going to Makerere University since last week but has not received his admission letter.
 
“My mother needs to plan for all the children, but because I have no admission letter, she is not even sure whether I was admitted. She needs to know how much my tuition will cost, but this gets more complicated each day,” Kyakuwa said.

Kyambogo University, which was supposed to open Saturday, 8 August, postponed the opening.

Other Public Universities are supposed to open next Saturday, 15 August.

Government needs sh31b to enhance the salaries of the 4,000 non-teaching staff at all public universities.










 

Vice Chancellors plead with non-teaching staff

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