PM makes funding pledge to get Lutheran Uni off the ground


THE Government will allocate more funding to have the Lutheran University established, says Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.
Speaking on Sunday at the 45th graduation of theological students at the Martin Luther Seminary, O’Neill said: “From the government’s side, we will put in some more money in next year’s budget to continue this work (of the Lutheran University).
“But I urge the church leadership to put your differences aside and put our community, people and especially our children, first.
“Let’s do it for our children.
“It’s not about who is going to control the money but it is about who is going to deliver for our people.
“Education is a life-long journey and we in the government are trying to harness this.
“The Lutheran Church and many other churches have gone ahead in education and did a lot in areas where the government cannot do it.
“We appreciate this sacrifice you are doing.”
The prime minister and a number of his Cabinet ministers were in Lae to witness the graduation of 36 students from the seminary.
O’Neill said the government would continue to support the move to establish a Lutheran University and would make available funding but if the leaders of the church were divided and serving their own interests, then it would only stall the progress of getting the university off the ground.
O’Neill, through his foundation pledged K1 million, to the
seminary to kick-start the move towards a university status by building a proper fence around its premises.
The government has since 2006 allocated more than K20 million to have the university established but internal tussle between two groups in the committee and changes to the Lutheran University of PNG Act has affected its establishment over the years.