BY WINSTONE MUSISI
University Academic Staff Union (UASU) wants President Uhuru Kenyatta to send home all Vice chancellors of public universities in the country to pave the way for investigations over alleged misappropriation of funds running into billions of shillings at the institutions.
The union, through its national Secretary General Constantine Wesonga claimed the VCs were to blame for the crisis facing the institutions of higher learning and that it was time for the Head of State to send them home.
Wesonga was flanked by the union’s national chairperson Grace Nyongesa speaking today to Moi University teaching and non-teaching staff who are on strike at the institution’s playground.
Wesonga said that it was not a must that all public universities should be run by professors accusing them of bringing down the institutions through bad governance and alleged embezzlement of funds.
“The professors who have been appointed to run our public universities are setting a bad example by running down the same institutions. This calls for a change of criteria in the appointment of CEOs of public universities,” said Wesonga.
He took a swipe at the Vice Chancellor of Moi University, Prof Isaac Kosgey for calling on the students to resume learning despite the fact that issues which led to its closure last month have not been resolved.
“I am calling on the parents of these children to send them transport to travel back to their respective homes because there is no learning at the university as we are talking. Students are just idling around as lecturers as they are still on a slow pace until their grievances are addressed by the institution management,” said Wesonga.
He reiterated that the stalemate pitting the university management, teaching and non-teaching staff will not end anytime soon and asked parents to come and pick their children to save them from wasting away.
UASU chairperson Grace Nyongesa asked Moi University to implement the CBA it signed with the teaching and nonteaching staff noting that failure to do so was tantamount to contempt of a court order.
“The court has already pronounced itself on the CBA issue when it directed the university management to implement the signed contents in the document to the letter. There is no shortcut on the matter and the university should just do the honorable thing by implementing the
court order,” said Nyongesa.
The staff have boycotted class to protest delays in payment of their salaries and failure by the institution to implement the 2017-2021 Collective Bargain Agreement (CBA).
Through the Universities Academic Staff Union (Uasu), Kenya University Staff Union (Kusu), Kenya Union Of Domestic Hotels Educational Institutions Hospitals & Allied Workers (Kudheiha) claimed the management had ignored their grievances.
The staff have claimed that their efforts to seek an audience with Vice-Chancellor Isaac Kosgei has hit a wall accusing him of neglecting them.
According to Uasu Moi University chapter Chairperson Richard Okero, poor management and misappropriation of funds were to blame for the institution’s challenges.
Uasu Moi university chapter Organising Secretary Nyabuta Ojuki claimed their grievances were simple issues the management had ignored.
“Our employer has oppressed us instead of giving us a conducive working environment. We demand full implementation of the CBA that the majority of other universities have already implemented,” said Ojuki.