The Vice Chancellor Makerere University, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe visited the College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS) on Wednesday, 28th February 2018. The Vice Chancellor was accompanied by members of the University Management Team including the Director Internal Audit, Mr. Walter Nono and representatives of the University Bursar – Mr. Peter Mubiru, University Librarian – Ms. Rhoda Nalubega and Director Human Resource – Mr. Richard Mugisha.
In his address to CoNAS staff, Prof. Nawangwe said that this meeting is an opportunity for top management to interact and get views of those they lead. He noted that the vision of Makerere as an institution can only be achieved by all stakeholders working together rather than top-down instructions. The Vice Chancellor further explained that the objective of the meetings between University management and staff at the colleges was to map out strategies on how to rebrand and improve quality of service, academic reform, administrative and financial restructuring and sustainability as well as institutional Human resource development.
The VC informed the meeting that management had taken a decision to include more people in the management of university affairs in an effort to reduce tension among staff. He said management will comprise of 2 committees and a forum as follows: a) The Central University Management Committee consisting of 16 members. b) The Top University Management Committee which in addition to the Central Committee also includes the 10 College Principals. c) The University Management Consultative Forum which in addition to the Top Management Committee includes the Chief Security Officer, 3 MUASA Representatives, 2 MASA Representatives, 2 NUEI Representatives and 3 Guild Council Representatives. “With these committees in place, we are positive that we will implement a transparent system with open lines of communication and hopefully better management,” Prof. Nawangwe said.
In his address the Vice Chancellor also highlighted other issues:
Rebranding and Quality of Service Delivery: Prof. Nawangwe underlined this as very important for survival and growth of the University. He said, ‘rebranding begins with the human resource of any organisation and their interaction with customers’, he stressed that we all have to check the way we deal with the customers that we serve. The Vice Chancellor advised that we should all serve our clients well so that they look back to their time at Makerere University with beautiful memories. He also informed staff that Management plans to retrain staff in customer service and develop customer/ client charter and therefore called for support from staff. The Vice chancellor while emphasized the need for staff to improve customer relations more especially in offices that have regular student interactions citing the Academic Registrar’s office as an example.
Infrastructure and Development: The Vice Chancellor told CoNAS staff that management is aware many buildings and facilities in the university but nothing much can be done due non availability of funds. He noted, ‘introduction of the incentive pay to staff a few years ago exacerbated the problem by taking all the Internally Generated Funds (IGF) from other activities like infrastructure’. However, the University Council plans to take a decision on incentive pay which will bring more resources for maintenance and development of facilities. In order to improve the image of the University, management was committed to addressing the infrastructural challenges and that to date, a lot has been done as evidenced in the improvements on the roads, lighting, sanitation facilities and that more was to be done as resources flow in, he said.
Collegiate Review and Issuance of Transcripts: On the issue of academic reforms and the college review processes, Prof. Nawangwe said work was in progress and that a preliminary report had been presented to the University Council for consideration and approval. “Reforming Colleges was intended to have decisions taken at that level”, he said. Concerning the evening programs, he noted that the programs although designed to cater for the working class, the reality was different and that all this would be resolved by the University council on the way forward. He reiterated that, ‘even when the incentive pay is scrapped, allowances would be paid for peculiar situations like evening load, extra load, leadership allowance, supervision and other responsibilities’.
On the issuance of transcripts, the Vice chancellor said management decentralized the service to the colleges to reduce on the congestion at Academic Registrar’s Office. It is planned that with improved capacity at the Colleges, the printing would also be decentralized.