Kampala-Makerere University is to kick start the search process for a new Chancellor as Prof. George Mondo Kagonyera’s term of office expires in January next year.
The communication was made by the University Council Chairman Dr. Wana Etyem during the 135th University Council meeting that took place last month.
”This is to inform the Council that the Chancellor’s term expires early January 2016, before the next graduation. I shall be drawing the attention of the appointing authority to this effect so that a search process may begin,” he said.
The Chancellor is the titular head of the University and presides over all ceremonial assemblies of the University, confers degrees and other academic titles and distinctions.
The Chancellor is appointed by the President, who is also referred to as a Visitor, on recommendations of the University Council for a four-year renewable term.
Prof Kagonyera replaced Prof Apollo Nsibambi, who was the first non-president to become university Chancellor. Before that, it was the norm for the reigning President of Uganda to hold that office. Meanwhile, at the time of his appointment Kagonyera, then Deputy Managing Director of National Social Security Fund (NSSF) vied for the post with the then Vice-President, Prof. Gilbert Bukenya,.
In 2008 Museveni zeroed in on Kagonyera, making him the seventh Chancellor in the history of the university, to serve his first four-year term. Then in 2011 he was re-appointed for a second term, which ends January next year.
Section 30 (2) of the Universities and Other Tertiary Institutions Act, states that the Chancellor shall hold office for a period of four years, but shall be eligible for re-appointment for one more term.
How one becomes a Makerere University Chancellor
The interviewing committee/search committee considers factors like integrity, knowledge of local and international education issues, commitment to serve the university, the financial status, level of education as well as the personality of the candidate. The President is guided by the Council’s recommendations, which clearly show the performance of candidates.
The other Chancellors of Makerere University include Milton Obote, Iddi Amin, Professor Yusuf Kironde Lule, Godfrey Lukongwa Binaisa, Tito Okello Lutwa and Yoweri Museveni and Prof Appollo Nsibambi.
Of these however, Yusuf Lule and Tito Okello didn’t preside over any graduation ceremony at Makerere as their regimes collapsed just after two and six months, respectively.