NDEA report indicts UTG VC
Friday, April 20, 2012
The vice chancellor of the University of The Gambia (UTG),
Professor Muhammadou M O Kah may be a good professor but not a good administrator
who can move the university to the envisaged level.
Since his appointment as
vice chancellor, he has gross disregard for the University Governing Council,
appoints mainly his relatives, and defies public procurement rules, among
others, thus making both staff and students’ disgusted and disgruntled with his
arbitrary administrative approach.
These are the findings of the National Drug Enforcement
Agency (NDEA) investigative panel that probed into allegations of Alhaji Gumbo
Touray, former director of University Affairs who is currently standing trial
for giving false information to a public officer contrary to Section 114 of the
Criminal Code Cap 10 Volume III Laws of The Gambia 1990. Touray’s lawsuit came in the wake of a petition he wrote to
the Office of the President clamming administrative malpractices by Professor
Kah at the UTG.
These findings were read in the Banjul Magistrate’s Court
before Principal Magistrate Taiwo Ade Alagbe on Tuesday 17th April, 2012,
following an application by defence counsel Badou Conteh. The report was
earlier admitted in the court in evidence following the testimony of an NDEA
officer as a prosecution witness.
According to the report, since the appointment of Professor
Kah as vice chancellor of the UTG, all committees (appointment and promotional
committees, research and strategy committee, exams and evaluator committee etc)
that were established by his predecessors for the smooth, transparent and
efficient running of the university were abolished.
“Attrition rate at the university among academic and
administrative staff under the stewardship of Professor Kah is unprecedented as
he is always taking decisions unilaterally without due consultations with the
Governing Council most of which are even ultra-varies. And under the
chancellorship of Professor Kah, the trend that the university is taking
apparently suggests that the university is moving away from the traditional
British system to the American system which is alien to Gambian education
system and basically his style of administration has relegated the progress of
the university and the atmosphere at the university now is that everyone is
In addition, the report of the Gambia Public Procurement Authority
(GPPA) on UTG states that the institution is not working in compliance with
GPPA rules, thus seriously flouting the said rules and doing things the way the
vice chancellor and his administration likes,” the report revealed.
The NDEA report further revealed that most of the
appointments into the senior cadre of the university (academic and admin) were
singlehandedly done by Professor Kah, without going by the prescribed
standards. Undoubtedly, it added, most of the beneficiaries of such
appointments are either his friends or relatives and investigations reveal he
may be using facilities of the university for his personal project as he has
constructed a college situated at Bijilo which is almost ready for use; the
building is decorated with the same color paint used on the fence of the
The report further stated that there is also a lot of cost
incurred by the university in the form of per diem claims and numerous and
frequent travels of the VC as his single travel will cost the UTG up to the
tune of D300, 000 to D400, 000. “The acting chief accountant says one of the
trips cost up to D600, 000. The VC is always travelling on first class and
their air tickets for which are mostly bought from Abbery’s Travel despite the
high cost implication knowing that the UTG is at its nursing stage.
addition to his D3.5 million annual salary, US$10,000 annually for his house
rent even though he lives in his own house and about D40, 000 every three
months for his children’s school fees, utilities, his maid and security
salaries which is outrageous for a developing university to sustain. Therefore
as a Gambian VC, he lacks sacrifice and patriotism. It is however not clear
where the huge salaries are approved from or who authorised them,” the report
The report then noted clearly that it is obvious that the
administrative approach of Professor Kah particularly in the area of academics
is compromising quality for quantity of courses thought at the university. This
has brought about more de-motivation among the staff coupled with discontinuation
of almost all their little benefits that they would enjoy. The welfare makes
them worried and they are crying foul.
On Alhaji Gumbo Touray’s allegations, the report reveals
that during the visit of the National Assembly Select Committee on Education to
the university, Gumbo Touray frankly expressed his dissatisfaction with the way
the university is being governed which certainly did not go down well with the
VC who consequently decided to suspend him, as in his words, ‘based on powers
conferred on him’.
However, he is not able to produce any investigative report
on the issue of Gumbo Touray though he has claimed to have constituted an
investigation into the matter. What is however confirmed is that the VC went
ahead to terminate the services of Touray unilaterally without consultation.
The report concluded that the UTG is without a laboratory
for all the science courses offered by the university, as the present
laboratories in use are meant to train teachers and are not the same as
university labs. At the moment, the university offers no practical course in
all the sciences and considering the government’s emphasis on the need to
advance the sciences, this is unacceptable.
Against these backdrops, the report concludes that Professor Muhammad MO Kah may be a good lecturer but not a good administrator who can move the university to the envisaged level.
Author: Gibairu Janneh