Mak Staff Tribunal Reinstates Vice Chancellor's Former Personal Assistant

The staff appeals tribunal has directed management to immediately reinstate, Elias Nuwagaba at Makerere University, saying disciplinary process leading to his dismissal from the university service had gaps.
Elias Nuwagaba - Chief Custodian and Former Personal Assistant to Prof. Nawangwe

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The Makerere University staff appeals tribunal has directed management to immediately reinstate, Elias Nuwagaba, the former personal assistant to the Vice Chancellor.  

The tribunal chaired by George Omunyokol also ordered fresh disciplinary hearing within 60 days, reinstate Nuwagaba to his last position held before dismissal and to continue earning his salary during the disciplinary process.

The University was also ordered to pay his arrears arising out of his dismissal since May 2018. It was also ordered that he continues occupying the university house until the matter is disposed of. 

The ruling was read before the appellant, Nuwagaba represented by Henry Rwaganika of Rwaganika & Co. Advocates and university represented by Mavis Kansime, a Senior Employment Officer at the institution and Naome Kiconco, the university lawyer on Wednesday.

 ///Tribunal Orders///     

 //Cue in: “There are gaps…

Cue out: …its own costs.”//

The decision to sack Nuwagaba was reached in the 565th meeting of the Makerere University Appointments Board, according to a May 23rd, 2018 communication issued by Andrew Abunyang, the Director Human Resources. 

Nuwagaba, the then Chief Custodian of the College of Health Sciences and former Personal Assistant to the Vice Chancellor in his former capacity as Deputy Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration was dismissed for alleged extortion and bribery. 

The decision to dismiss Nuwagaba arose out of the recommendations of the Sub-Committee of the Appointments Board on May 22 that found him guilty in all the five counts levied against him.

The counts included evicting occupants of the Edge House No. 37 without authorization while acting as a personal Assistant to Prof. Nawangwe, soliciting and accepting money from M/S Just Clean It Ltd in 2016, a service provider while serving as the Chief Custodian of the Main Building, non-adherence to the university policies as well as breaching and contravening the university's prescribed rules, regulations and procedures causing financial loss to the institution.

Abunyang, the Human Resources Director at the institution, at the time of Nuwagaba’s dismissal had directed him to immediately hand over University property in his possession to the college principal.  

Events following Nuwagaba’s dismissal were characterised by internal fights in the main building and constant accusations of abuse of office by the former the Chairperson of the Appointments Board, Bruce Balaba Kabaasa. 

Nuwagaba accused Bruce Balaba Kabaasa, for using the Main Hall for more than five years without paying for it, yet the facility is meant to be rented out at 2 million shillings per day.

Nuwagaba's accusations were contained in a dossier he sent to the staff webmail accusing top university managers of defrauding the institution. He also accused the university top managers of fabricating cases against him after exposing some of the irregularities they are involved in.

Subsequently, the University Police summoned Nuwagaba to record a statement for releasing information that compromises the university image. Since then, no case has been opened against him at the University Police.