KUHeS staff union sworn in

The first ever Kamuzu University Staff Union (KUSU) was sworn in yesterday on the 6th June, 2023 at the Kamuzu University of Health Sciences, Mahatma Gandhi campus. The swearing in ceremony was presided over by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Associate Professor Belinda Gombachika and University Registrar Mr. Christopher Namagowa. Also gracing the ceremony were KUHeS staff. The union was announced on Friday 31st March, 2022 after the university held successful elections.

Chairman for the elections committee Professor Chiwoza Bandawe thanked everyone that participated in the elections and assured the gathering that the elections were free, fair and did not register any irregularities.

Whilst leading the KUSU executive into taking their oaths, Risk Analyst Sthembiso Msisha grilled the executive on the need to have the conviction to serve the KUHeS community which was eagerly looking forward to having their grievances addressed.

“As you take the oath, know that you are creating obligations on yourselves to work for the people. These positions are demanding and will require you to be impartial; to place people of the KUHeS community above yourself; to place their needs above yours and to place the institution above yourself. You put yourself up for elections and you won, but are you actually ready to run the race? Are you ready to serve?” Questioned Msisha.

In his inaugural speech, KUSU president Mr. Chawanangwa Ngámbi assured staff that his leadership was people-centred and would work around the clock to make sure grievances raised by staff are favourably addressed. Among others, he emphasised that his union will address issues of pension, unitary salary structure and increment, gratuity and staff recruitment.

“My union is deeply committed to serve the KUHeS community and i believe together we can achieve remarkable things hence i implore everyone to actively participate in the affairs of the union by attending meetings and contributing constructive ideas. Through collaboration with KUHeS management we can solve all the challenges that KUHeS staff are facing. Together we can build a great future for ourselves and generations to come hence let us embark on this journey with passion, dedication and unity as there is nothing for us without us,” said Ngámbi.

Associate Professor Belinda Gombachika took to the podium to thank the KUSU election committee for conducting a great election. She then thanked the KUSU executive for taking the challenge to represent the rest of the KUHeS staff. Among other sentiments, she encouraged the executive to be guided by KUHeS policies or frameworks and should refrain from copying policies from elsewhere into KUHeS.

“As management, we cannot do everything on our own, we need the union to work together with us to achieve the goal and vision of the university. History has been made today as you are the first ever KUSU executive to be sworn in. On behalf of management, there are three things that i would like to emphasize on namely staff, the governing policy and yourself. Members of staff have high expectations from you hence you need to know them; not just Mahatma Gandhi campus staff but all KUHeS staff from all campuses. Secondly I want to urge you to know the governing principles for KUHeS, there is an Act for KUHeS and that’s what should guide you and not policies from elsewhere,”

The DVC went on to urge the newly elected union to capitalise on the strengths of each other and never the weaknesses.

“If you are to take KUHeS to the next level you need to know yourselves and what each one of you can bring to the table. Sometimes as union leaders we tend to go beyond our limits but as a team we need to guide each other. Above all, let me remind you that when you were taking your oaths you said so God help me, yes let God help you and be your pillar of wisdom, let God guide you,” concluded Gombachika.

The KUSU executive comprises of the following members:

President: Chawanangwa Ngámbi

Vice President: Gibson Masache

General Secretary: Mary Kyumba

Vice General Secretary: Violet Chikhambi Kamwendo

Treasurer: Godfrey Gonondo

Representative for School of Maternal, Neonatal and Reproductive Health: Charity Kabondo

Representative for School of Medicine and Oral Health: Jenala Njirammadzi

Representative for School of Global and Public Health: Andrew Matchado

Representative for school of Life Sciences and Allied Health Professions: John Mponda

Representative for School of Nursing: Mandaachepa Nyando