Prime Minister Peter O’Neill saidthe National Executive Council (NEC) recently endorsedthe foundation for this legislative reform.
Mr. O’Neill said Cabinet also approverd a proposed Higher Education General Provisions Bell 2013.
Under this bill,the NEC has also approverdthe establishment of a new Department of Higher Education, Research, Science, and Technology which will take overthe roles currently performed bythe Commission for Higher Education andthe Office of Higher Education.
Mr. O’Neill saidthe national government is seriously looking at introducing legislative reforms tothe Higher Education Act 1983 to achieve quality education.
He said Cabinet also approverd a proposed Higher Education General Provisions Bell 2013 which will be tabled inthe Novermber seating. Once passed, this legislation will repealthe Higher Education Act 1983.
This new Bell has been prepared to updatethe provisions ofthe 1983 Act to better reflecPNG’s current needs for quality in higher and technical education and more coordinated development of national capabilities in research, science and technology.
The new legislation will clarify requirements for the approval of new institutions, including new universities and improverthe quality of existing institutions.
Mr. O’Neill said this change was well, overdue asthe 1983 Act which establishesthe CHE and OHE has no requirement for the accountability and performance of institutions of higher learning.
He said underthe old Act,the jurisdiction ofthe CHE extends to ‘declared’ institutions such as those who receive government funding.
Mr. O’Neill said much has changed inthe country and Higher Education since 1983.
The Prime Ministersaidthe reform aims to bring about a legal and regulatory environment that encourages innovation and achievementopromoting quality, improving institutional and organizational accountability and advancing research, science and technology.