The outgoing Vice Chancellor of Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BUIST) Professor Inyang says the future of the university is uncertain if nothing is done to save it from external parties.
In a letter addressed to BUIST staff, students and copied to the University’s Chancellor, former President Festus Mogae, Inyang states that he believes in the separation of roles between the Management and Council of a University.
“No member of staff or student should take instructions on any BIUST Management matter whatsoever, from persons outside the Management structure of the University. This has been compromised and I do not see how the emerging format of operation can lead us to the targeted status of an international research university that can help develop the economies of Botswana, the SADC and the African continent,” said Inyang.
In the same letter Inyang states that “I am writing to you to personally inform you that I have resigned from my position as the Vice Chancellor and Distinguished Professor of BIUST. I am currently on terminal leave until such a time that agreement on severance arrangements is reached with my Appointing Authority- the Honourable Minister of Education and Skills Development and the Chairman of BIUST Council.” Stating reasons for his resignation, Inyang warns that universities should not operate on the basis of rumours. “Rumours and allegations cannot be prevented, but they should be subjected to time-tested verification processes as specified in university operational policies and guidelines,” he said.
He added that “Willful misinterpretation of such policies by external parties above the level of Management of BIUST has occurred when Management set up an Internal Commission of Enquiry to verify circumstances surrounding what was clearly harassment of foreign staff on the BIUST Campus on Tuesday, September 16, 2014. That Commission has been cancelled by an external party.”
“So, I tendered my resignation without an iota of regret.” He pointed out that “ I will now leave BIUST to lead the African Continental University System, a new South Africa- based initiative that is configured as an elite institution with campuses in six African countries and two others in the United States, and Dominica (the Caribbean) respectively.”
The letter also states that “I thank all of you for collaborating with me during my service as the Vice Chancellor. I saw a lot of your commitment to our mission of reaching high levels of institutional excellence. With your help, we have risen in the global ranking of universities.”
Inyang urged staff and students to work with the Acting Vice Chancellor and the remaining Management staff to consolidate and improve upon the measurable “gains that we made during the past 15 months.”