Outspoken academic and human rights activist Stella Nyanzi has won her case against Makerere University which suspended her in March 2017.
Dr Nyanzi, who was a research fellow at the university’s Institute of Social Research, was thrown out for allegedly insulting First Lady Janet Museveni, who is also the Education and Sports minister.
On Monday, the university’s Staff Appeals Tribunal lifted her indefinite suspension after finding that the action was illegal and contravened Sections 63(2) of Uganda’s Employment Act, 2006.
Section 63(2) demands that any suspension under sub-section (1) shall not exceed four weeks or the duration of the investigations.
The tribunal faulted the Makerere board for breaching the law and failure to conduct its statutory duty since Dr Nyanzi has been on suspension for more than a year.
“The suspension of the appellant (Dr Nyanzi) as initiated in the said letter dated 31st March, 2017 from [Makerere University] the respondent’s director, human resources is hereby set aside with immediate effect,” the ruling read.
Upon receiving the news, Dr Nyanzi took to her Facebook page to express her joy, likening her triumph to that of David after slaying Goliath.
“Wuuuuuululululu! We won, my people, we won. Makerere University Staff Appeals Tribunal judged in my favour a few minutes ago,” she posted.
“I celebrate my brilliant lawyer, brother, friend and comrade Isaac Ssemakadde for a tough legal battle won… I feel like David after slaying Goliath.”
The tribunal also gave her remedies— including issuing an order to the university to pay her emoluments and all the money that was withheld following the suspension.
The appeals tribunal also instructed the university to conduct any pending disciplinary actions within 30 days.
Dr Nyanzi is not to controversy. She shot to global fame after calling President Yoweri Museveni “a pair of buttocks”.