KENYA: Catholic University of Eastern Africa Gets New Vice Chancellor

ADDIS ABABA, JULY 24, 2018 (CISA)-Rev. Prof Stephen Mbugua, of the Catholic Diocese of Nakuru, has been appointed the new Vice Chancellor of the Catholic University of Eastern Africa.

Berhaneyesus Cardinal Souraphiel the outgoing chairman of AMECEA and the Archbishop of Addis Ababa announced the appointment on July 23 2018 at the end of the 19th AMECEA plenary assembly that took place in Ethiopia.

Fr Mbugua takes over from Mr Justus Mbae, the first lay Vice Chancellor who has served the university since May 5, 2016.

Until his appointment to CUEA Fr Mbugua was Vice-Chancellor Designate of Tangaza University College and affiliate of CUEA.  He holds a doctorate in educational psychology from Egerton University, where he served as the Dean of Students, Director of University Welfare Services, and as the Chair of the Department of Psychology, Counseling, and Educational Foundations.

In January 2018, the Commission for University Education (CUE) recommended that the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, which is owned by the AMECEA, restructure and get a sound financial footing, failure to which their charter should be revoked.

In a multi agency report dated January 22, CUE called for a forensic financial audit of Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) and Kenya Methodist University (KeMU) to establish their financial stability, suitability and ability to function optimally.

The report cited conflicts of interest between the church and the universities and gave them three months to address the problem.

“CUEA, Presbyterian University of East Africa and KeMU should stop engaging the service of consultants, particularly in the governance. The consultants reflect a creation of a new governance organ that has no legal basis and whose costs are sinking the institutions into more debts,” the report read in part.

The commission visited the institutions in September 2017 and inspected specifically governance, management, financial stability and students’ welfare.

In response, Prof Justus Mbae, Vice Chancellor CUEA said that the university is already: “…implementing a turnaround strategy that involves restructuring and rationalization of its administration staff, and other resources aimed at ensuring sound financial operations.”

“We assure all our stakeholders that CUEA is doing all that is needed to remain in operation as a chartered University,” he said.

In a communiqué released at the end of the just ended AMECEA plenary the member bishops called for accountability in the management of Church Institutions.

“Our responsibility of stewardship requires us to demonstrate values of integrity, accountability and transparency in the management of all our Church institutions in AMECEA Region. In the spirit of collaboration with the laity and to tap from their valued talents, we commit to work towards building a regional network of Catholic professionals for sharing best practices in integrity, auditing, inclusion of the laity in governance and leadership of church institutions,” the communiqué said.