Academic opposes change

National, Normal

The National, Monday, May 23, 2011

MOVES to change the Higher Education Act are simply a way to have greater control over universities, Papua New Guinea University of Natural Resources and Environment vice-chancellor Phillip Siaguru says.
The Office of Higher Education ran advertisements announcing its intention to change the law but speaking during the launching of the PNG-Australia Alumni Association (PNG AAA) Ko­kopo chapter at the university last week, Siaguru said universities would lose their autonomy if the office had greater in­-fluence over them.
 “The excuse they are using is that whenever there is a demonstration or student protest, the government is helpless and the universities cannot handle their domestic affairs, I tell you that is an excuse,” he said
“Every year I receive calls from politicians, departmental heads because their child did not get a placing at the University of Papua New Guinea or University of Technology.
 “We are going to compromise it totally because politicians will call up vice-chancellors and say take my child or your job is gone.”
It is understood that vice-chancellors from all universities took out an advertisement in last Friday’s newspapers, challenging the Act.
He urged the alumni to use their network to block this proposed amendment.