Smear Campaign: Tubman University Reacts To Double Salary Report
Monrovia – The Administration of William V.S. Tubman University located in Harper, Maryland County says it has learnt of reports published in certain media entities in Monrovia, alleging that the University is involved in “corruption act”.
In a statement, the University stated that it is aware that this is a smear campaign by some unscrupulous individuals aimed at maiming the character and reputation of members of its management team.
“The University strongly condemns such acts. Even though we strive to provide the facts whenever such malicious lies are given to the public, we must use this opportunity to register our concern that some media entities and agents could be easily manipulated to spread lies to misinform the public, and in the process, attempt to malign the reputation and integrity of the University and its administrators”, the statement indicated.
The University added that its bound by the Freedom of Information Act of the Republic of Liberia which makes it possible for any individual/entity (the media not precluded) to request any information from the University, within the confines of the law.
“Equally so, we remind media entities and agents that are being used to propagate these misinformation and half-truths to guide themselves by the Code of Ethics of the Press Union of Liberia, of which Article 13 cautions journalists against ‘spreading false information or unproven allegation’”, stated the Tubman University.
The Tubman University stated that it is assuring the public that it is not deterred by this recent wave of smearing campaign bent on destroying its strong foundation.
Continued the University statement “It can be recalled that the University has had to deal with such libel and slander in recent times that projected a glaring intent to tarnish the very foundation upon which the University is built. The University remains focused on its aim to provide quality education that transforms the lives of individuals for worthy service”.
“Double Salary at TU”
On the question of the payments of double salary to some employees of the University, the University stated that its actions are guided by principles of operation, core values, policies, procedures, and, most importantly, the laws of the Republic of Liberia.
Providing further clarity, the University stated that it operates a policy where when a critical position is vacant, the University may designate a competent employee to assume the responsibilities of the vacant position in the interim, in addition to their regular assignment.
“When that happens, the employee gets a fair and reasonable compensation for assuming additional responsibilities, based on an established formula. It is only fair to reason that when an employee is asked to temporarily perform the role of a vacant position, that employee gets compensated. This policy has been in effect since 2010; it was modified in 2013”, the statement furthered.
This policy, the University stated has been applied to a number of positions and departments within the University whenever the need arises, including Director of Security, Dean/College of Management and Administration, Vice President for Administration, Vice President for Sponsored Programs and Economic Development, Assistant Vice President for Finance and Budget, Assistant Vice President for Human Resources, Director for Alumni Affairs, Accounts Receivable Accountant, Recruitment Officer, Accounts Payable Accountant, among others.
The statement noted “Please note that most positions mentioned herein have already been filled and “acting compensation” has been withdrawn. This policy is applied by the University to fill operational void in the event an abrupt personnel gap occurs or replacement is not imminent. The policy is also coherent with Part T (Personnel Emoluments) of the Public Financial Management Act of the Republic of Liberia”.
Also, the University disclosed that its Handbook also allows for a monthly stipend to faculty members who assume the role of department chair and it is stated that in the case of the Department Chair will receive an extra stipend in addition to his/her monthly faculty salary.
“Finally, it is also important to inform the public that the appearance of two earnings on the University payroll for May, June, and July 2016 is in line with GOL’s decision to split general allowances of employees into both LRD and USD, in addition to basic salary component which is normally paid in LRD”, the statement continued.
‘Contracts to unregistered companies’
On the issue of awarding contracts to unregistered companies, the Tubman University declared that as a state-operated University its internal policies and procedures are coherent with national statutes and serve the basis of its operations.
“Contracts awarded by the University are in consonance with the PPCC laws; hence, it is preposterous to assume that any single individual (not even the President of the University) can give or award contract to a company without compliance with the controlling PPCC laws of the Republic of Liberia”, the Tubman University stated.
The statement also indicated that the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Elizabeth Carbajosa does not push the interest of faculty and lacks transparency and accountability in the operations of the department.
Tubman University stated that the University’s Division of Academic Affairs has a structure that allows for the highest standard of transparency and accountability at all levels where the Vice President for Academic Affairs and deans of the various colleges represent the division of Academic Affairs at the President’s Council (a senior administrative body at the University) where university-wide issues are deliberated and addressed.
Concluded the statement “The VPAA also meets with the dean’s council on a weekly basis to discuss and address issues and activities related to the respective departments and faculty of the various colleges of the University.
The University also holds monthly University Council (a larger administrative body including faculty and student representatives and department chairpersons) meetings where university-wide issues, including those related to academic affairs are addressed”.