Over 100 lecturers at Busoga University are listed for dismissal for lack of requisite academic qualifications.
While the National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) has left the minimum qualification for a lecturer open, it is agreed by most Ugandan universities that possession of a Master's Degree is mandatory. Several universities have set the minimum at PhD level.
Busoga vice chancellor Prof David Kibikyo says the affected lecturers are holders of Bachelor's Degrees and Diplomas which automatically disqualifies them from service.
He said the academic staff were recruited by his predecessor, Fred Nabwiso to serve as part-time lecturers. They were later promoted to work as full time lecturers of the university without a review of their qualifications.
The dismissal is also one of the preconditions for a charter set by NCHE. In order to obtain the charter, the university needs to have qualified staff on its list of employees.
"They can go and teach in secondary schools but not in the university" Kibikyo said.
He said the university is aiming to reduce the number of its non-teaching staff from 159 to at least 60 as a way of reducing expenditure. He says majority of the staff are often redundant.
"With the reduction in the number of students at the campus there is no need to maintain this big number of people," Kibikyo said. "We don't need messengers and secretaries because this is work that can be done by a driver," he added.
However, the affected lecturers led by the interim chairman Thomas Mayende have threatened to block the move. They claim that they were genuinely assigned to serve as lecturers and don't see the reason why they should be sacked after 16 years in service.
Busoga University is a private university in Uganda, affiliated with Busoga Diocese of the Church of Uganda. The Iganga-based institution was founded in 1999, following the issuance of a tertiary institutional license by the Ministry of Education and Sports.
Source: All Africa