The management of the University of Rwanda (UR) have been put on spot over mismanagement of university affairs and resources with outright negligence of responsibilities leading to loss of hundreds of millions of francs.
As senior managers of University of Rwanda Nyagatare campus appeared yesterday before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to respond to queries raised by the Auditor General in the 2014/2015 report, it was pointed out that there are corruption tendencies in the university that involved a payment of Rwf 900 million to a company hired to construct a Vet Complex, a laboratory for veterinary students, and was paid the money even before bills of quantities were approved with much of the work incomplete.
A total of Rwf 3. 7 billion was allocated for construction of the five-storey Vet Complex with agreements signed on 1st June, 2014 and later a payment of 20% of the total budget was effected yet only 8% of construction activities had been completed.
Such negligence irked MPs who suspected the university staff integrity to have been compromised.
“Wasn’t there any corruption in the tendering process? The contracted firm did nothing of what it ought to have done. Isn’t that a clear case of corruption? Can the case be analyzed under any other circumstances?”Wondered Juvenal Nkusi, PAC chairperson.
The UR management told MPs that they are to terminate the contract with firm which has already been paid over Rwf 900 million.
Parliamentarian, Kankera Marie Josée has observed that the company started building the foundation of the Vet Complex when only three months were left for the project time-span of 18 months under which they had agreed to complete the building.
The Auditor General, Obadiah Biraro has explained that the contracted firm received 14 % of the total tender value and other 6% of two invoices worth Rwf 300 million with no value for money. MPs were told that the contracted firm executed works worth Rwf 308 million. He was later stopped after realizing that he was incapable of measuring up to the required standards.
Prudence RUBINGISA, the Vice Rector of Administration and Finance at the University of Rwanda has accepted weakness on their part in following up construction activities of the Vet Complex adding that it was later realized that the hired firm was not qualified to complete the complex.
Nyagatare College was pointed to have raised salaries for employees without following due process among other malpractices leading to court cases filed by its employees and paying would-be avoidable fines.
Others financial mishaps of the college include having Rwf 1 million in Bank of Kigali but not recorded in its financial books, and failure to remit insurance subscription for employees to Rwanda Social Security Board (RSSB) and owing tax arrears to Rwanda Revenue Authority.
The management of UR explained that the mistakes were corrected and the employee in charge faced consequences which they declined to state.