Action on uni audit

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THE interim council of the University of PNG will look into the 13 areas identified in a 2013 external audit as requiring attention, and implement them, an official says.
Acting vice-chancellor Prof Kenneth Sumbuk told The National after his appointment by the interim council at its first meeting yesterday, that he would “revive UPNG’s academic standard and review the 2013 external audit”.
“As we settle into the new academic year, we will audit all 13 areas of the university management that has not been done (since 2013),” he said.
“Parents and students must not worry about anything as there will be nothing shaken or swept under (the carpet). I am looking forward to facilitating the investigation and reviews proposed by the Government.”
The 10 council members were appointed on Monday by Minister for Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology Pila Niningi after sidelining acting chancellor Dr Nicholas Mann and acting vice-chancellor Vincent Malaibe.
Niningi said he had to make the changes because of the failure by the university council to respond to queries he had made on certain matters regarding the institution since July last year.
Mann however told The National yesterday that they would reserve their comment on their sidelining by Niningi because they were seeking legal advice from the university’s lawyers.
“Whether the decision to sideline us is proper or not, that would be advised by our lawyers and then we will announce it to the public,” Mann said.
Sumbuk and the interim council members will serve for 12 months.
New Chancellor Jeffrey Dean Kennedy said Sumbuk was a former Pro Vice-Chancellor of UPNG and was familiar with its operations and staff members.
The council also rescinded the hike in compulsory fees, and it will remain at K2,939.
Kennedy said those who had already paid the new fee would be refunded the difference.
Tuition, boarding and lodging fees will also remain the same as last year.
The new academic year is scheduled to start on the first week of February.

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