Officials at Makerere University are poking holes in the recently publicized findings of an investigation that was launched into the scandal which marred the university’s last graduation ceremony in January this year.
Makerere’s 70th graduation narrowly survived postponement after the company contracted to supply graduation gowns for the 13500 graduands, failed to deliver.
The company, Team Uniform Ltd delivered less than half of the gowns, (6383) and the university was left to make last minute improvisation with local tailors in neighboring Wandegeya, who supplied the rest.
A subsequent internal investigation into the scandal was recently concluded and the findings came out pinning one Mr Charlese Barugahare, the University Secretary.
Makerere’s Vice Chancellor Prof Barnabas Nawangwe while releasing the findings of the report, accused Mr Barugahare of flouting several procurement guidelines when he awarded a procurement contract to Team Uniform Ltd.
The contract was awarded in 2015 and supply for the gowns started in 2016.
The investigation report according to media, also found that Barugahare failed to supervise the process of procurement which led to ‘several anomalies’ during the bidding process, award and management of the contract.
However, it has emerged that Mr Barugahare was not involved in the process of supplying of gowns for the 70th Graduation, since he was out of office.
When contacted this morning, Mr Barugahare told ChimpReports he was out on a yearlong study leave at the Atlantic International University in the US where he is doing an online doctorate program.
“To be categorically clear, I started leave on July 1st 2019 and its meant to end on 30th June 2020,” he said.
“The graduation took place in January 2020. The ordering of gowns could not have taken place before June. It is therefore not possible that I was part of that mess in January,” Barugahare said.
Barugahare believes the gowns crisis was caused among others by the university’s failure to order the gowns in time and also failure to pay.
The gowns supplier has previously made these same accusations in the media.
ChimpReports understands that in the absence of Mr Barugahare, the procurement responsibility lied with his deputy, one Yusuf Kiranda who is the Ag. University Secretary.
Insiders at the university have since expressed doubt about the fairness of the investigation.
One source told this website they believed this report was part of the internal politics given that this particular office (University Secretary) will be vacant and up for grabs in a few months’ time.
ChimpReports has also established that among the several names eyeing the seat is Kiranda himself.
The Vice Chancellor, Prof Nawangwe, according to media, invited Mr Barugahare to explain himself on the report findings.
When asked about this matter, Barugahare said he had asked the VC for more time because the process of awarding the gowns contract in 2015 involved a lot of players and departments.
Our efforts to reach Prof Nawangwe for a comment were futile as he didn’t pick our calls.