UoN Sacks Deputy Vice-Chancellor over Insubordination

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The Vice-Chancellor, UoN, Prof. Peter Mbithi speaking at the National Urban Youth Forum

The University of Nairobi’s (UoN) council sacked the deputy vice-chancellor of Administration and Finance on Tuesday last week following a meeting that deliberated on his suspension, which he had served since November last year.

Prof. Bernard Njoroge appeared before the council chaired by Chairman Idle Omar Farah where he received the matching orders for insubordination.

Multiple sources at the institutions indicate that the decision to relieve him off his duties was arrived at after it emerged that the two could not reconcile, even after attempts by Ministry officials.

The Council has since informed the Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i of the termination, although Prof. Njoroge maintained that the council cannot sack him.

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“It’s the cabinet secretary who can terminate my service since he is the appointing authority. We have to wait for his communication,” Prof. Njoroge said.

His sacking is now expected to end long running wrangles between him and his boss Vice-Chancellor Peter Mbithi.

In September last year, the council intervened to resolve the dispute unsuccessfully.

This was after Prof. Njoroge accused Prof. Mbithi of overstepping his mandate by seeking to control the finances at the institution, which was his area of jurisdiction.

Prof. Mbithi had also issued new guidelines directing that all expenditure above Sh100,000 can only be approved by him.

The Vice-Chancellor also moved performance contracting to his office, taking away powers he enjoyed when he himself served as the DVC, Academic Affairs, before elevation as the university boss.

He also moved performance contracting to his office, taking away powers Prof. Njoroge enjoyed before he was appointed to the senior office by the former Education PS Jacob Kaimenyi.

Prof. Njoroge protested to the university council in August with the confidential letter that ended up in the public domain.

In September, Dr. Farah wrote to Prof. Njoroge: “The council took great exception to the approach taken by yourself in airing your grievances. In its wisdom, the council elected to tempter justice with mercy and therefore wishes to issue a very strong warning that this approach will not be tolerated in future and will invite severe disciplinary action.”

Previously, the embattled professor was the College of Architecture and Engineering’s principal from January 2009 to April 30, 2015.

A professor of Civil Engineering, he previously served as Dean, School of Engineering and Chairman, Department of Civil and Construction Engineering.

Prof. Njoroge was awarded a PhD in Civil Engineering at Duke University, USA.

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