Exiled lawyer Miguna Miguna has waded into the University of Nairobi (UoN) supremacy battle for the Vice Chancellor (VC) position, pointing an accusing finger at Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha.
This is after Magoha revoked the appointment of Prof Stephen Kiama as the new VC by the University Council, citing lack of consultation from the government.
Miguna accused the CS of interfering with the independence of the universities insisting that the government must be consulted when major decisions such as appointment of VCs is being done.
“George Magoha has become a despotic sycophant who disregards the fact that public universities are legally independent and authorized to appoint their own VCs and other administrators. Magoha argues, illegitimately, that the UoN VC must be “approved” by Uhuru Kenyatta,” he tweeted on Monday.
The vocal lawyer, without providing evidence, claimed the quality of education was significantly destroyed during the regime of retired President Daniel Arap Moi, calling for protection of institutions of higher learning, so as to maintain high quality educational standards.
“Kenya’s high quality educational standards and academic independence that are essential for a thriving academic environment, research and scholarship, were significantly destroyed under the Moi dictatorship. Let’s protect universities from political interference,” Miguna added.
Magoha on Monday defended his move to revoke Kiama’s appointment, saying the university council erred by not consulting the executive, and accused it of being influenced by unnamed forces to make the appointment.
“The council acted in manner that did not conform after failing to consider the government’s input in filling the position,” he said.
“It is unfortunate that someone somewhere is pulling strings and wants to destroy the University,” the CS added.
However, the Employment and Labour Relations Court on Monday suspended Magoha’s decision after Prof Kiama filed a petition challenging his removal.