Universities Urged to Participate in the Development of Strong Leadership Policies

Universities Urged to Participate in the Development of Strong Leadership Policies

Higher education institutions have been called upon to conduct research into the development of robust governance norms that will streamline the country’s leadership structure. This, according to the experts, will be vital in providing necessary resilience and sustainability.

This was revealed when JKUAT CBD Campus hosted a lecture for its staff and postgraduate students pursuing studies and research in the fields of governance and leadership on Thursday, March 28, 2024.

The purpose of the discussion titled, “The Role of Robust Governance Systems in Supporting Leadership,” was to educate participants on the significance of putting in place strict rules and regulations that would adequately support a robust governance model.

Dr. Kevin Omai, a Senior Officer at the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) who specializes in procurement aspects and doubles up as a Program Officer at the National Integrity Academy at EACC, expounded on the significant role institutions of higher can play in setting up these leadership models.

According to Dr. Omai, many African leaders feel that in order for them to advance in the leadership ranks, less oversight and weak governance frameworks may be advantageous to their cause. He reiterated that this approach opens the door for social vices like grand corruption and the misappropriation of public funds.

“A poor governance framework might be a significant setback in our attempts to overcome the myriad bottlenecks that plague the leadership structure and hold them exclusively accountable. This, along with public perception, creates a conundrum that may necessitate large and rigorous efforts by EACC and other stakeholders to address the issue,” said Dr. Omari.

Dr. Omai said, raising public awareness of the EACC’s roles and their three-pronged approach to combating corruption, which includes enforcement, prevention, and education, could help the public in considering how they could contribute to the development of governance codes that will support effective methods of exercising good leadership.

He also noted that the fight against corruption and other vices should be a collaborative endeavor, with institutions of higher learning having a role through research and the integration of critical components into their curricula.

Dr. Omai and participants after the talk.

The EACC officer stated that the commission has established certain regulations to guide the conduct of public officials and governance systems in the public sector, but more is required to improve and make them dynamic.

He also advised participants to always ensure that in all their undertakings, they set the tone on non-corruption and ethical leadership at the top, develop working whistle-blowing channels, establish service chatters and wherever possible, automate operations to reduce person-to-person interaction.

While representing the Director, Nairobi CBD Campus, Prof. Peter Njenga, Dr. Peter Wanjohi said, the topic of discussion highlighted the critical role institutions of higher learning could play in the fight against corruption and other social vices in the society.

He further stated that the initiative could be an excellent channel for the participants to pursue partnership with EACC that could be of mutual value to society in the long term.

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