Prof. Elijah Ateka, Prof. Daniel Sila and Dr. Francis Njonge have been elected as Deans in the first ever elections for their respective Schools in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (COANRE).
The trio were elected to their positions for the next two years having previously been appointed by the Vice Chancellor, when the Faculty of Agriculture was upgraded to the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources in 2018.
Prof. Ateka, Dr. Njonge and Prof. Sila will carry on as Deans of Schools of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences (SOAES), Natural Resources and Animal Sciences (SONRAS) and Food and Nutritional Sciences (SOFNUS), respectively.
Dr. Njonge was voted in unopposed, while Prof. Sila and Prof, Ateka demonstrated their popularity amongst voters in their respective schools who voted overwhelmingly in their favour.
Prof. Ateka garnered 31 votes beating his opponent Prof. George Mamati who got 6 votes while Prof. Sila won against his opponent, Prof. Willis Owino by 21 votes to 6 votes.
In his acceptance speech, Prof. Ateka pledged to continue steering SOAES towards research and innovation. He further pledged to increase the number of programmes in the School which he revealed, was his strategy of attracting more students to SOAES.
While thanking the SONRAS faculty for another opportunity of Deanship, Dr. Njonge called upon all members to unite and rally behind him in order to further enhance the growth of the School.
He emphasized the importance of COANRE and agriculture in food security in the country, stating, it will only cease to be the backbone of the country “the moment we will have an IT egg”.
On his part, Prof. Sila expressed his gratitude to his opponent for the level of professionalism he demonstrated during the electioneering period. He further thanked the organizers of the elections for “free and smooth elections” which he said was a show of collegiality and integrity.
Prof. Sila called for unity after the elections pledging to work with all staff members in order to promote equity in SOFNUS.
The Registrar, Academic Affairs, Dr. Esther Mworia who presided over the electoral process, congratulated all participants noting that they had all shown a high level of maturity and professionalism during the elections.
She urged them to be cordial with each other after the concluded elections stating, every member of faculty had the right to vie for any elective post.
SOAES, SONRAS and SOFNUS elections were conducted on June 8, 2021, June 9, 2021 and June 10, 2021 respectively.