The university of Nairobi vice chancellor Prof Peter Mulwa Felix Mbithi is reportedly constructed a private home in Karen worth Sh200 million. And as if that is not enough, he has purchased Sh20 million worth of office furniture and equipment without following procurement procedures. It is also reported that the university’s vehicles were secretly being used to deliver the materials for the construction. The office furniture are said to have been delivered on a Sunday night in his office thus not complying with procurement procedures and requirements. A claim he has dismissed as “False, unfounded and unsubstantiated,” adding that “The furniture and equipment cost only Sh3.9 million and not Sh20 million as claimed by UASU.”
The professor of Veterinary Surgery who is said to have been deserted by a section of his deputies and university council is accused of running the university of Nairobi like a private entity. Mbithi is currently facing the wrath of the Universities Academic Staff Union (UASU) UoN chapter, which has given him three months to resign over embezzlement of funds and incompetency failure to which they will down their tools. Led by their secretary general, George Omondi, the UoN chapter has petitioned the Cabinet secretary for Education Prof George Magoha to come to the rescue of the institution that is collapsing under debt.
Amidst the drama, the institution owes workers millions in salary arrears and allowances. UoN has failed to remit tax deductions to Kenya Revenue Authority, National Hospital Insurance Fund and Pay As You Earn.
On his part, Mbithi maintains that “The university is experiencing financial problems due to reduction of 30% in government funding , and the interruptions of academic programmes for about eight months in 2017 due to lecturer’s strike,”
In a move to secure his bid for second term, it is said that he manipulated student’s leadership to have the weakest candidates win, organized professors conference in a desperate move to lobby them and is also accused of using divide and rule tactic by bribing those with high appetite for money to compromise their stands. It is reported that it is in Mbithi’s tenure that those with questionable academic papers rose high up the rank with majority hurriedly moved from PhD holders, to senior lecturers and then professors.
Most of his allies are already boasting of his second term.