North Rift leaders protest appointment of ‘outsider’ VC at Moi
Uasin Gishu Governor, Jackson Mandago and a section of leaders from Rift Valley stormed Moi University Tuesday, September 20 protesting the appointment of Prof Laban Ayiro as the institution’s acting Vice Chancellor.
Prof Ayiro was appointed VC on Monday, September 19 by the Cabinet Secretary for Education, Dr Fred Matiang’i to succeed Prof Richard Mibey whose term officially ended after a decade of being at the helm of the varsity.
“Prof Ayiro will act for a period of three months until a substantive VC is appointed,” said Dr Matiang’i in a letter dated September 19 and addressed to the University Council chairman, Prof Jenasio Kinyamario.
However, Governor Mandago, flanked by MPs Oscar Sudi (Kapsaret), James Bett (Kesses), Silas Tiren (Moiben) and Uasin Gishu County Speaker, Isaac Terer, were not particularly amused by Dr Matiang’i’s decision and vowed to disapprove Prof Ayiro, whom they claimed is an ‘outsider’.
The leaders maintained that Prof Ayiro’s appointment was a plot to block Prof Kosgey, who had reportedly topped the interviews, from assuming office. They further demanded that the results be made public, amidst fears that the position of the VC will be advertised afresh after two weeks despite the interviews being conducted.
However, the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) chair, Franics ole Kaparo, in a quick rejoinder urged all politicians to let Kenyans to work and study anywhere without fear and discrimination.
He further added that the action by the leaders raise ethnic hatred and distrust, insisting that national universities should be left to be national.
Nonetheless, the leaders vowed to disrupt the Moi University 32nd graduation ceremony slated for Thursday, September 22 and Friday, September 23 unless Prof Isaac Kosgey is appointed the VC.
“Moi University does not belong to any ethnic group. The graduation will continue whether they like it or not. NCIC officers will go to Moi University tomorrow (Wednesday, September 21) and conduct investigations, and if the politicians are found guilty, they will be charged with spreading hate,” added Kaparo, insisting that no more than 30% of employees should come from a single ethnic group in any institution.
However, the university management has maintained that the graduation ceremony will go on as planned.
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