In what is being hailed by Daystar University as the record number of applicants for a university vice chancellor position in the country, the varsity’s top job went to Prof Laban Ayiro, who emerged victorious against 29 other applicants.
Prof. Laban Ayiro directly beat out Prof Peter Ngure of Technical University as well as South Eastern Kenya University Deputy Vice Chancellor Prof Zipporah Ng’ang’a. The three had made a three person shortlist of the 30 applicants.
Business Today understands that at least two current administrators at Daystar University had also applied for the position. An administrator from St. Paul’s University and another from a varsity in Rwanda were also among the record number of applicants.
The applicants, according to the university, had applied through Human Resource consultants Manpower Services.
The news, which first broke on February 22 when an internal memo from the Daystar University Council Chair Prof. Henry Thairu was made public, was officially revealed to media on February 23 at a press briefing.
During a press conference at the university’s Nairobi Campus, Prof Thairu said, “The decision to appoint Prof. Laban Ayiro was taken by a full Council on Friday February 22.”
“The appointment of Prof. Ayiro follows a rigorous process that began in August 2018 soon after the inauguration of the new Council,” Prof Thairu said.
The former Moi University Acting VC replaces former VC Prof Timothy Wachira, who was sacked by the institution in June of last year. Prof Ayiro will take over from Prof James Kombo, who was elevated from Deputy VC for academics to the position of Acting VC in December 2017.
The position of the VC at the academic institution became vacant after students went on strike in late 2017, accusing Prof Wachira of mismanagement, poor leadership and lack of transparency.
The unrest led to the closure of Nairobi and Athi River campuses last year with police officers involved to calm the situation.
The strike was accompanied by a failed meeting between Daystar University Students Association (DUSA) and the Senate over a comprehensive financial audit report. Student leaders wanted the report made public but the varsity’s administration refused.
Since then, the university has seen the disbandment of the Council, as well as changes within the top hierachy such as the resignation of the Deputy VC in charge of Finance and Planning, the reshuffling of the Dean of Students office holder and an enforced leave for the University Services Manager.