MIM board blamed for appointing Dean Kabwila as interim executive director on probation

The Board of the Malawi Institute of Management (MIM) has been blamed for appointing Dr Jessie Kabwila as Acting Executive Director when she has not even completed her probationary period.

Kabwila’s appointment follows the recent suspension of acting executive director Samson Sikelo Phiri over allegations that he allowed a conference to take place where ‘artificial’ attendees blew up more than K20 million. .

Phiri was suspended along with his acting director of training and consulting, Collins Jambo, and acting director of finance Catherine Mselemu.

A few days after the suspension, the Council appointed Kabwila to head the institution. An internal notice from the institution’s director of human resources and administration, Nelson Mabvumbe, confirmed the appointment.

“I am writing to inform you that the Board of Governors has, effective July 13, appointed Dr. Jessie Kabwila as Acting Executive Director,” the notice reads.

But the board’s decision has raised serious questions among stakeholders, with others wondering why it had to appoint an unconfirmed employee to the institution’s top job.

Moreover, sources within the institution have expressed concern that Kabwila, who holds a doctorate in comparative literature, is not the right candidate to head a business school.

“The executive dean of a business school must have a qualification in business, management and a related discipline,” a source told MIM.

The Chairman of the MIM Board of Trustees, Professor Lewis Dzimbiri, has not yet responded to our questionnaire which was sent to him on Sunday with a reminder sent on Tuesday.

Governance expert Mabvuto Bamusi argued last week that suspending the three was not enough. He called for the dismissal of the entire board.

“The suspension of the three managers is not enough. It is the MIM board that must go. The ultimate responsibility for corporate governance rests with the board. The executive directors are mere employees of the board administration,” Bamusi said.

He also called for the rights of the three managers to be respected, saying they must be heard.

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