Retired Archbishop Benjamin Nzimbi has commended JKUAT for setting the pace by establishing an Ombudsman’s office that is able to handle grievances from its stakeholders.
He said the introduction of the office, the first in the history of Kenyan universities had made the university’s operations stress-free, making it one of the institutions in the country enjoy goodwill from its stakeholders.
“JKUAT, as the first University to introduce the Office of the Ombudsman, an idea that was muted by the globally acclaimed Kenyan scholar, Prof. Ali Mazrui, has continued to reap the benefits of the office from the ambiance and good environment it has cultivated within and without the University,” said the retired bishop.
Bishop Nzimbi made the remarks when he visited the university’s campuses in Nakuru, Kisii and Kisumu, where students and staff interacted with him to compliment the university’s progress as well as sharing their experiences and challenges. Similar visits are planned for the remaining campuses in Nairobi CBD, Karen, Westlands, Kitale, Kakamega, Mombasa, Kigali in Rwanda and Arusha in Tanzania, respectively.
He advised institutions in the country to be pro-active in the handling of issues raised by students and staff as ignoring them always leads to agitation, which does not bode well in civilized societies such as universities.
Peace in any establishment, he emphasized, enhanced the vision and mission of any institution, as proper facilities equally encouraged performance and joy of both staff and students, hence boosting their moral to do more.
He advised staff and students in the university to utilize his office at any given time, should they be aggrieved or when they have any useful information to share with others. “Ours is to decrease the pain if any and increase the joy. We want to ensure that people relate well with each other, and the working environment is conducive to all, Bishop Nzimbi informed told staff and students during his visit.
During the visit, Nakuru CBD Director, Dr. Juma Wagoki said his campus enjoyed a friendly working environment with both staff and students due to the regular meetings held between the various officials representing staff and students.
While briefing students and staff in the various campuses on the role of the recently upgraded Corporate Communications Department of the University, the University’s Acting Chief Corporate Communications Officer Dr. Hindzano Ngonyo said, the office was charged with the management of communication channels within and without the entire university, among other responsibilities.
He urged staff and students to exhaust all channels of communication within their establishment when confronted with challenges other than running to the media. “This, he said, would enhance their cordial and mutual relationship with the management and guarantee them of a complimentary and beneficial relationship.
Also present during the visit was the Ombudsman’s Office Administrator, Advocate Marryanne Mwihaki Wanyoike.
The Office of the Ombudsman which was set up in 2010 functions independently and assists in the informal resolution of concerns regarding variety of issues that affect the smooth running of the University.