On the trail of the missing PNG fisheries observers
‘In our best interests’: Unitech council details reasons for Dr Schram’s termination & says due process was followed

My fight for my job: Unitech council is denying me due process

Happier days
Happier days - Dr Schram after winning his first battle to remove him from Unitech in 2014. He now faces a new struggle over his academic credentials

ALBERT SCHRAM | Vice Chancellor, Papua New Guinea University of Technology

LAE – To understand my predicament, people need to understand that allegations about my credentials reaching back to 2014 and 2015, and which were not an issue a year ago during my annual performance assessment, are the product of political infighting and nothing else.

The only ones who have treated me as a convicted criminal without giving me the benefit of the presumption of innocence are those who seem to have, for whatever reason, a personal interest in my removal.

With the gracious help of the press, I created an opportunity for the University Council to give me access to my personal file and provide me with a few more weeks to refute all the allegations in detail.

Regrettably, the Council seems impervious to any influence from outside: staff, press or students. All this has nothing to do with logic or the truth. The agenda was set in advance and seems to be driven by narrow personal interests.

My request to get an extension of time has been denied by Chancellor Jean Kekedo. I also received an email from Deputy Vice Chancellor Dr Ora Renagi to stay away from the office and all my requests to the Registrar to get access were not answered.

My question to the Registrar of whether a recent copy of my certified doctorate were available was never answered.

My case is going to focus on the Registrar not submitting key evidence that I complied with Council’s request upon contract renewal in 2015 to produce a certified copy of my degree.

At this time, I had immediately sent an email, with a copy to the Registrar and Deputy Vice Chancellor, to the renowned European University Institute and asked that certified copies be sent to Lae and Cairns.

When the copy arrived in Lae, I walked to the Registrar with the envelope and gave it to her. With this, for me, the matter of my credentials was finished after having to deal with a stream of slanderous allegations in 2012 and 2013.

The other copy I kept. [Dr Schram has previously written, see PNG Attitude yesterday, that he believes the Registrar destroyed one of the original copies of his credentials.]

The matter was not brought up again by the Registrar during my performance evaluation in August 2016 which lasted almost a full day and was supported by an external consultant.

What was truly pathetic during the recent hearing was that Sam Koim again brought up the matter of the typos on my degree and asked why I participated in a degree conferral ceremony 10 years after obtaining my doctorate.

At some point he even produced the same two fake doctoral degrees which had been photo-shopped with a different logo in 2012 in order to cast doubt on my own credentials.

The fake copies were, of course, not certified, while mine is and has the correct logo.

After my interrogation by Council on Thursday, I understood the Registrar’s deceit and submitted the original credential to Council. Regrettably, like blind horses, they continued on the chosen path and decided by a majority vote that the evidence was inadmissible. Big mistake.

Not content with this, the next day I went to the Crossroads Hotel and saw the Acting Chancellor. With characteristic rudeness which she confuses with decisiveness, she said she did not want to talk to me and only wanted to talk to me in Council.

Fortunately her lawyer inspected the document closely and heard me out. Not having been granted access to my files this is all I could do. This is the key fact that will bring down their case. Council has been misled by the Registrar and there must be consequences.

Unfortunately this has not dawned upon them yet. They will find out soon that it is not easy to railroad and bulldoze an inconvenient Vice-Chancellor like me with six years’ experience in dealing with Council politics and political infighting.

As always, I use full disclosure and transparency as the most effective weapon against slander and innuendo.

After all these years in PNG, you can imagine I have a good list of contacts and I am not afraid to reach out because I have nothing to hide and did nothing wrong. We will win.

You can link to Dr Schram's Facebook page here


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