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Kaimosi Friends University (Kafu) VC Appointment Controversy Lands in Court

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Kaimosi Friends University (Kafu) VC Appointment Controversy Lands in Court

The journey to appoint a substantive Vice-Chancellor (VC) for Kaimosi Friends University (Kafu) took an unexpected turn when the Public Service Commission (PSC) declared a vacancy on August 8, 2023. What began as an administrative process soon found its way into the legal arena, with one aggrieved candidate seeking justice.

Challenging the Education Ministry’s appointment of Professor Mary Onyango Abukutsa as the VC, the court case has shifted the focus from academic deliberations to legal proceedings. Meanwhile, the Education Ministry has appointed Professor Peter Mwita from Machakos University as the acting VC.

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Professor Jack Nandi, who had been overseeing the institution since its establishment in 2015, has taken the matter to the Labour Court. He contends that despite emerging as the top candidate in the PSC interview, the Education Ministry disregarded the law in denying him the VC position.

According to Nandi’s court filings, the PSC recommended him, along with Prof. James Njiru and Prof. Mary Abukutsa Onyango, to the Kafu Council for consideration. Despite the council’s recommendation of his appointment based on merit and past precedents, the Education Ministry opted to endorse Prof. Mary Abukutsa Onyango for the position.

Nandi argues that this decision sets a precedent detrimental to future applicants, suggesting that the selection process becomes biassed towards certain candidates. He highlights the implications of such actions, indicating that they undermine the integrity of the interview process.

As the legal battle ensues, Kafu University remains in a state of transition. Community and civil groups advocate for the appointment of Abukutsa, citing her local ties, while others support Nandi, acknowledging his role in the university’s development. Amidst these tensions, there are calls for a swift resolution to ensure the institution receives a qualified VC capable of leading it to academic excellence.

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Kaimosi Friends University (Kafu) VC Appointment Controversy Lands in Court

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