The Dean of Students at Makerere University, Cyriaco Kabagambe has denied the bribery allegations made against him by a student.
Kabagambe was this week accused by a law student Ronald Ainebyoona for soliciting for Shs5.6m bribe so that he could be nominated as a guild candidate.
But Kabagambe says the student has a hidden agenda against him and the university.
In a document dated March 7, 2018, Ainebyoona claimed to have paid the money in three installments to the then Chairman of the Electoral Commission Peter Makumbi and the secretary, allegedly the dean of students agent.
Following the media reports on Wednesday, Kabagambe says he called the media to tell them his side of the story but Kabagambe says Ainebyoona stormed the office where he was addressing the press and destabilized everything.
“When the media came to crosscheck the information with me, Mr. Ainebyoona stormed into the room where I was talking to the media and interrupted the meeting, denying me the opportunity to clarify some issues,” said Kabagambe.
Kabagambe said that the allegations made by Ainebyoona are baseless, unfounded and only aimed at tarnishing his name and that of the university.
“I would like to clarify that I did not solicit any money (bribe) from any student during the entire guild electoral process. The allegations being made about me are empty, untrue and hopeless,” said Kabagambe.
He accordingly says he provided an oversight role to the guild electoral commission. According to Kabagambe, when Ainebyoona’s complaint about the demand for money by the chairperson Electoral Commission was brought to his office, Kabagambe asked Ainebyoona to put the complaint in writing, which he declined.
“He went ahead to state that if his money was not refunded he would not allow the elections to go on. He even threatened he would expose me in the public eye. To me this was blackmail,” Kabagambe states.
All this was witnessed by Assistant Commissioner of Police ACP Enock Abeine, the Makerere Chief Security Officer.
Kabagambe says he agreed together with ACP Abeine, to contact the chairperson electoral commission to clarify on what was being alleged.
“When I called the Chairman and asked him to explain, he denied wrong doing. I asked him to put all his explanation in writing which he did in his letter on March 7, 2018,” Kabagambe said.
Makumbi denied receiving money on behalf of the dean. He however narrated how Ainebyoona had attempted including submitting forged results to convince the electoral commission to include him on the list of successful candidates in spite of having no qualifications for the post.
To be a guild candidate according to the guild constitution, a student is required to present normal academic progress, implying that they should not have retakes.
“When he told me he had retakes, I advised him to study hard, clear the retakes and apply to stand for guild president when the next opportunity came. Since that time, he went silent until he came to my office claiming that the electoral commission had taken his money and refused to include him on the list of successful candidates,” Kabagambe said.
Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe on Friday in a statement said Ainebyona was desperate after a failed attempt to get nominated, including presenting forged results.
“I wish to warn the University Community, particularly the student community, that attempts to seek office in the Guild using dubious means will not be tolerated and offenders will be subjected to disciplinary action,” Prof. Nawangwe said.
But the statement was dismissed by a large section of students who accused the vice chancellor of taking sides with the Dean of Students.
Ismah Sabaidu, a first year student of Industrial Psychology said the dean of students needed to be thoroughly investigated since the entire student guild election process is under his supervision.
“Just to whistle blow more; the current electoral commission you’re supervising is charging Shs 80,000 to every student running for GRC. We are much aware that the University administration off the annual students’ subscription to the guild is funding this entire process by close to 72Million shillings, Sir where does this money go? ” said Sabaidu.
Godwin Toko Abunia, a fourth year student of law in his open letter to the Vice Chancellor accused him of accusing, convicting Ainebyoona without trial.
“The Dean of students has a number of things that you should seek to know from him. How were the guild aspirants nominated, how did we end up with candidates without the prerequisites as per our constitution without the Dean detecting? Was the matter entirely left to the E.C chairman? How come the resignation letter of the said chairman has remained a top secret not seen by any student?” Toko raised the questions.