Makerere starts search for new vice chancellor

Monday, 13 March 2017
Makerere VC Prof Ddumba Ssentamu

Makerere University last Friday formally started the search for a new vice chancellor, with the tenure of Prof John Ddumba-Ssentamu coming to an end.

The incumbent is entitled to run for a second time to retain his office. Indeed, officials close to him have indicated he may throw his hat in the ring, despite a troubled time at the helm of the oldest university in the country.

During the recent graduation ceremony, Prof Ddumba-Ssentamu was cautious not to indicate if he would take the office or not, in his speech.

“Since I assumed office on September 1, 2012, my current term will expire on August 31, 2017. I would like to thank you Mr Chancellor, Sir, for having given me this opportunity to serve Makerere University,” he said.

According to a statement by the university spokesperson, Ritah Namisango, the search process was kicked into gear following a University Council meeting on Thursday March 9, 2017.

Consequently, a search committee composed of two members from the University Council was set up in line with Section 31 (3) of the Universities and Other Tertiary Institutions Act.

The elected members are deputy university council chair, Irene Ovonji Odida and Bruce Balaba Kabaasa (also head of the university appointments board).

The relevant law stipulates that the search committee will also have three members from the University Senate, who are to be appointed in a fortnight. These shall help identify suitable candidates for the post of vice chancellor and forward them to the senate to nominate three candidates for recommendation to the University Council.

Word at Makerere indicates that apart from Prof Ddumba-Ssentamu, the deputy vice chancellor for Finance and Administration, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe and Prof Edward Kirumira may be planning another run for the vice chancellor’s office. All three declined to comment on the search process.

We understand that a section of lecturers are also hoping that former vice chancellor, Prof Venansius Baryamureeba will change his mind and consider running for the post again.