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University of Goroka sacks its top management team

Dr Gairo OnagiPNG TODAY

THE interim council of the University of Goroka has dismissed three members of the university’s top management team - vice chancellor Dr Gairo Onagi (pictured) and his two deputies, Dr Michael Mel and Dr James Yoko.

Chancellor Joseph Sukwianomb said the decision was most difficult but, harsh as it was, it was meant to restore the fast-disappearing public confidence in public institutions.

Mr Sukwianomb referred especially to apparent failings in the duties and stewardship of public officials.

A recent report of an investigation committee set up by Higher Education Minister, Malaki Tabar, had made serious adverse findings against the three former administrators.

The council’s verdict was reached following a series of legal and administrative processes which followed two months of student unrest at UOG was stopped in late September and stability returned to the campus.

The council’s ultimate punitive action against the former administrators followed adverse findings relating to the use and abuse of public funds given to the University of Goroka.

Contract for amounts exceeding millions of kina had been let without proper legal systems and processes being followed,

There had been instances of senior officers who were allowed to “double dip” and run operations that were not checked or accounted for.

With the three former administrators gone, there is a more willing spirit to move forward this major teacher training university. Students are now returning to their communities and most of the final year will graduate early in 2016.

Chancellor Sukwianomb said the interim council will undertake an audit of academic and research programs at the university to take stock and decide which to keep and which to be trimmed or eliminated.

He said that improving and maintaining quality in universities, especially for teacher training, is paramount for any reform of education and training.

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Arnold  Mundua

No wonder there was student unrest experienced in that premier institution over the last couple of years.

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