14 Jul 2020

Regional university reiterates commitment to a 4th campus in Solomon Islands

6:38 am on 14 July 2020

The University of the South Pacific has reiterated its commitment to build the USP's 4th campus in Solomon Islands.

This was relayed by USP Vice-Chancellor Pal Ahluwalia while marking the country's 42nd anniversary of independence at the university's Laucala Campus in Suva.

The University of the South Pacific's Vice Chancellor, Pal Ahluwalia.

The University of the South Pacific's Vice Chancellor, Pal Ahluwalia. Photo: USP

Establishment of a Solomon Islands USP campus had already been approved by USP Council last year.

The Solomon Star reports the Vice Chancellor confirming that the 4th campus will be built soon.

Professor Ahluwalia's attendance at the Solomons' independence celebration follows recent turmoil at the USP which he was centrally involved in.

He was suspended as Vice Chancellor on 8 June by the Executive Committee of the USP Council.

Professor Ahluwalia was barely two months into his new role when he made public allegations regarding abuse of office and serious mismanagement by his predecessor and the council's leadership group.

The claims were encompassed in a yet-to-be released audit report by forensic accountancy firm BDO Auckland.

Hundreds of students and staff protested the suspension and two weeks later, the full council met and reinstated the Kenya-born academic.

Meanwhile, the audit report that is understood to have found widespread corruption and mismanagement at the USP will not be released to the public.

The decision was made after a meeting of the university's council, last week.

The university said the report would only be released to council members.

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