- Matters regarded as professional misconduct
Under Section 30 of the Human Resource Management Professionals Act, 2020, a Human Resource Manager is guilty of professional misconduct if he/she: –
- deliberately fails to follow the laid down human resource procedures of his employer or client save those which are in violation of law;
- refuses, fails or neglects to apply established human resource principles in the course of discharging his professional functions;
- engages himself in corrupt activities or practices;
- is guilty of gross negligence in the conduct of his professional duties;
- engages himself in negative practices such as nepotism, tribalism, racism and other acts of discrimination in the discharge of his professional functions;
- discloses information acquired in the course of his duties to any person without the consent of his employer or client or otherwise than required by law;
- uses his position to obtain favours of a sexual kind or other benefits for which he is not entitled to in the discharge of his professional functions;
- engages in activities which are in conflict with those of his employer or client or activities which are contrary to those for which he is registered as a human resource professional;
- is found guilty of fraud or any dishonest act;
- allows any person to practice in his name as a Human Resource Professional unless such a person is the holder of a practicing certificate and is in partnership with him or employed by him;
- enters for the purpose of or in the course of practicing as a human resource professional, into partnership with a person who does not hold a practicing certificate or secures any professional business through the service of such a person or by means not open to a Human Resource Professional;
- pays or allows or agrees to pay or allow directly or indirectly, to any person (other than a person who holds a practicing certificate, is a retired partner or the legal representative of such a partner) any share, commission or brokerage out of the fees for, or profits of, his professional services;
- expresses an opinion on any matter with which he is concerned in a professional capacity without obtaining sufficient information on which to base the opinion;
- fails to keep the funds of a client in a separate banking account or to use any such funds for purposes for which they are intended; and
- does or fails to do any other act which may be prescribed.
- The inquiry procedure
- The Disciplinary Committee
If the Council of the Institute of Human Resource Management believes that a Human Resource Manager may have been guilty of any of the matters listed above, it refers the matter to the Disciplinary Committee to inquire into the matter. The committee consists of five members appointed by the Council, from among the members of the council. The committee appoints one of its members to be the Chairperson.
The Manager whose conduct is being inquired should be afforded an opportunity to be heard in person. The Committee has power to regulate its own procedure. During inquiry proceedings, the committee may administer oaths, and enforce attendance of persons as witnesses and the production of books and documents.
If, upon recommendation by the Disciplinary Committee, the Council is satisfied that a Manager is guilty of professional misconduct, the council may: –
- Issue the human resource manager with a letter of admonishment;
- Suspend the registration of the human resource manager for a specified period not exceeding twelve months;
- Withdraw or cancel the practicing certificate of the human resource manager for such period not exceeding five years as may be appropriate;
- Impose a fine which the Council deems appropriate in the circumstances; or
- Remove the name of the human resource manager from the register of qualified human resource managers.
The Council should inform the manager in question as soon as practically possible of the action taken against him.
A manager whose name has been removed from the register or whose practicing certificate has been suspended should surrender to the Council his or her certificate of registration or practicing certificate. Failure to surrender the registration certificate or practicing certificate amounts to professional misconduct, thus one being liable to fine not exceeding one hundred thousand shillings.
- Right of Appeal
If a manager is aggrieved by the Council’s decision, he/she may appeal to the High Court within sixty (60) days from the date of the decision. The High Court may annul or vary the decision as it finds necessary.
Where a human resource manager has been suspended from practicing, he/she may appeal to the Council for the lifting of the suspension at any time before the expiry of the suspension. If the Council is satisfied, it will lift the suspension upon receipt of the prescribed fee, and restore the manager’s registration and practicing certificate.