On the 22nd of March 2022, the Africa University Board of Directors elected Reverend Professor Peter Mageto as the 5th Vice Chancellor of the United Methodist- related institution. Rev. Professor Mageto who hails from Kenya, is the first non- Zimbabwean appointed to the prestigious position. Reverend Professor Mageto previously served in the capacity of Deputy Vice Chancellor, leading the reimaging and repositioning of Africa University’s programmes to create graduates who are fit for purpose with a desire to lead the development of the continent. He has been the Acting Vice Chancellor from January 2021 to the present after the sudden passing of the late Vice Chancellor Professor Munashe Furusa.
Led by the university Board Chairman Bishop Mande Muyombo, the search committee over the past 9 months served with dedication and divine conviction to shortlist over 3000 applications for the position which were received from Africa, North America and Europe to identify a visionary leader who will lead the 30-year-old university into its next decade of impact and transformation on the continent.
Speaking after his appointment, Professor Peter Mageto said, “I accept this appointment with humility. I take your confidence with the grace that God has granted me. This appointment is to me a vocation and I shall treat it as such. I will continue to seek God’s purpose and be a humble servant of this university. I will continue to seek out the wise counsel of the Board of Directors and its support as we move this great university forward.”
Rev. Professor Mageto’s vision and grounding philosophy for Africa University is best captured in four words, our people, our values. To be built upon a foundation of academic excellence, innovation, accountability and institutional advancement, the journey ahead is one filled with immense promise and guided by unwavering faith.
Board Chairman Bishop Mande Muyombo appreciated the contributions and the important part played in the selection of the new vice chancellor by the community with extensive engagement across the university, with partners and with friends in line with the university’s policy of shared responsibility and shared governance. Bishop Muyombo also went on the stress the perfect timing of the appointment as the university commemorates its 30th anniversary this year, “As we prepare to host formal events in October to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Africa University, the election of Professor Mageto is a blessing from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. I congratulate Professor Mageto and Mrs. Mageto, on this pivotal and history-making moment.”
With messages of affirmation, love and joy from the Board of Directors, Africa University Chancellor Bishop Gaspar Domingos of the West Angola Conference offered words of encouragement saying, “This is a moment of renewal and new expectations that affirm the presence of hope in the life of our university”.
President and CEO of Africa University Inc. (Nashville, Tennessee) and Associate Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement Dr. Jim Salley spoke to the international nature of Africa University reflected through this appointment saying, “We are now truly living into our mission as a pan-African university. Here is an example of the institution doing what it said it would do: to nurture principled Christian leaders for Africa and the world and equip Africans to do for themselves.” Africa University Inc. Tennessee raises, holds, invests and disburses resources to advance the university’s ministry.
Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science, and Technology Development and Africa University Vice Chancellor Emeritus (2008-2014) Professor Fanuel Tagwira, pledged his support to the new vice chancellor as he fulfills his mandate. “In interacting with Professor Mageto, we have found him to be a true pan-Africanist and a man of ideas. Professor Mageto’s gifts fit well with the mandate of Africa University, and we, as government are ready to work with him to take Africa University to a new level.”
Representing the voice of the student body, Students Representative Council President Shannel Ziki described Rev. Professor Mageto as, “The perfect leader for the position. His vision, plan and strategy give us hope for a better, improved, world-class university. Congratulations, Makorokoto, Amhlope, Hongera!” Alumni president Dr. Faith Nyamykapa added, “The over 10000 alumni of Africa University congratulates Rev. Prof. Peter Mageto on his well deserved success. We celebrate his leadership and we are confident that the dedication and ability that got him this far will continue to serve him well as he takes our prestigious institution to higher levels.”