By Sarah Mazirwe – Kampala, Uganda, and Eric Tataw – Washington DC, USA, Wednesday, March 11, 2020.
While many Africans crave to work with Africa’s biggest organization that unites North to South, East and West- the African Union (AU), the president of AU Staff Association (AUSA) Sabelo Mbokazi unveils the rot that happens in the recruitment process.
In a letter, a copy in the keeping of National Telegraph addressed to the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat dated March 6, 2020, without “Technical Know Whom” it is very difficult to work with the entire AU.
In the letter, Mbokazi pins the Chairperson for aiding the recruitment of staff under unclear and unprofessional circumstances. One of the staff in hot air is the Acting Human Resource Manager, who Mbokazi says, he was recruited without qualifications with the aid of the Chairperson.
“The Vexing question is what logic was used by the chairperson to confirm a staff member who was pushed through the back door to act in such a key administrative position without even conducting interviews and without relevant expertise (qualifications) and experience? Has this organization fallen slow? Mbokazi wrote.
Mbokazi notes that the practice of indiscriminate confirmation of the staff in acting positions is perpetuated by what he describes as ‘a corrupt cartel, operating within the system of recruitment in the commission. Mbokazi in the letter expressed the discomfort that the corrupt cabal has been facilitated by the Chairperson who is supposed to protect the values of the organization.
“During our meeting, the staff expressed profound dismay that instead of saving the organization as the Chairperson, you have succumbed to the corrupt cabal and clandestinely signed to recommend unlawful irregular confirmation of the acting Head of Human Resource Management incumbent, thus further plunging this organization into an administrative quagmire of the insurmountable proportion,” reads the notice.
Mbokazi decries that fighting corruption vice is very difficult since a system from the top management up to the last management has been created making it easy to recruit “scrap” employees in AU. “Regrettably, this network organized in a very mafia-style has gained confidence and they now operate aggressively at every level with impunity including the commissioner level,” Mbakazi said.
The letter, however, appreciates the Chairman for his intervention during the Executive council meeting of the 33rd AU summit, which led to the changing of the clause that had it been maintained, would have led to close to 500 short term staff losing their jobs by the end of 2020.
Mbokazi noted that during the meeting, the staff expressed profound dismay as well as anger that the structure processes were in many instances forced through without due consultations with staff, participating at departmental level.
“This glaring lack of consultations is a clear violation of cardinal principles set at the beginning of the process. Staff is not informed about structural changes in their respective divisions and units,” the notice reads.
Mbokazi wants the chairperson to uproot the rot and impunity and also restore the rule of law in the union. “During the staff meetings, staff indicated that the rules have been indiscriminately flouted and chaos prevails both at headquarters and regional offices,” reads the notice.
Mbakozi urges the Chairperson to act swiftly to dismantle the cartel that is handling recruitment and put some controls to demonstrate some semblance and clean governance to reclaim the integrity and credibility of the AU Commission.
Many however think the Chairperson is an integral part of the cartel and can only do things propelling the corroding of AU’s image both in Africa and abroad. Many political pundits hold it’s best for the Moussa Faki Mahamat to honourably resign.