PM mum on inquiry

National, Normal

The National, Thursday October 24th, 2013


A COMMISSION of inquiry report into the Papua New Guinea University of Technology (Unitech) in Lae has been completed although details have not been released.

A source said the report was too damning because a number of high profile people were implicated in it and the Government was reluctant to release it yet.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, when asked about the report on Tuesday, said he could not comment yet.

The Government ordered the inquiry after a split between the university management and the board, sparking a protest by students last year.

It appointed Justice Mark Sevua to investigate the power struggle that broke out between the university council led by Philip Stagg and Ralph Saulep, and the former vice-chancellor Albert Schram.

It is understood the report was completed at the end of May.

“When Sevua gave it to me, I passed it on to the people at the Education Department,” O’Neill said.

“I will find out and I will inform the public very soon.”

Higher Education Minister David Arore said last July the National Executive Council had accepted the report and he expected to make public the findings that month. But this has not been the case.

Schram is understood to have been deported by the Government but still on the Government payroll while overseas.

Earlier this year, former Unitech head of electrical and communications engineering, Prof Narayan Gehlot, former vice-chancellor Prof Misty Baloiloi and others were cleared of charges of misappropriating more than K675,000 belonging to the university. Prof John Pumwa is acting vice-chancellor.