UNIVERSITY of Zimbabwe (UZ) lecturer Lovemore Madhuku has taken the institution to court, challenging its failure to appoint him as dean in the faculty of law.
BY CHARLES LAITON
In the application seeking a review of the UZ’s decision, Madhuku, cited the UZ and other officials in their official capacities such as, Buzwani Donald Mothobi, vice-chancellor Levi Nyagura, Pedzisai Mashiri, Nester Mukwehwa, Noah Mutongoreni, Julie Stewart, Rodgers Matsikidze and Innocent Maja, as respondents.
“This is an application for review in terms of order 33 of the High Court rules, 1971. What I seek to be reviewed is the first respondent (UZ)’s decision not to appoint me, while at the same time appointing the ninth respondent (Maja), to the position of dean of faculty of law of the first respondent (UZ),” Madhuku said in his founding affidavit.
The 51-year-old senior law lecturer and lawyer said he has been teaching at the institution since 1994 and was later contracted on a full-time basis in 1997, adding that after completing his probation in 1997, he was later appointed chairman of the department of public law in the faculty of law in 2001, by the then vice-chancellor Graham Hill.
“As a full professor, I am a permanent member of the senate by virtue of section 15 (1) (a) of the UZ Act. I have served as a member of the council of the first respondent for two terms of three years each as a member under section 11 (1) (c) of the UZ Act,” he said.
Madhuku, however, said the panel that decided on who was to be appointed dean in the faculty of law, which comprised Nyagura, Mashiri, Mukwehwa, Mutongoreni, Stewart and Matsikidze, lacked jurisdiction in that it was appointed by the UZ council.
“Accordingly, its decision not to appoint me while at the same time appointing ninth respondent as dean of the faculty of law of the first respondent is illegal, null and void and of no force or effect,” Madhuku said, adding Maja did not meet the requirements set out in law for appointment purposes.
The law professor further said the appointment of Maja to the post was unreasonable and that “no reasonable person, applying his or her mind to a comparison of my qualifications with those of the ninth respondent and conscious of the legal requirements for the position of dean of the faculty, would have taken such a decision”.
Madhuku said the position of dean was advertised in the newspaper in November last year, to which he applied, but did not receive any written acknowledgment of his application.
The matter is yet to be set down for hearing.