Unitech: Indefinite Boycott

Students at the University of Technology, demanding the return of Dr. Albert Schram as Vice Chancellor, have begun an indefinite boycott of class today.


Student president, Eddie Nagual, said   they will decide on the next cause of action in 48 hours.

Meanwhile, the recently appointed Higher Education Minister, Delilah Gore, is in discussions with the director of higher education to find a way forward.


The start of another academic year at Unitech has begun with another boycott of class over an issue that is dragging into its third year.


Yesterday students Representatives made their intentions known.

Today the students presented their petition to the administration, and boycotted class.


The students say their petition is non-negotiable. They want Dr. Albert Schram returned as vice chancellor and they are giving government 48 hours to respond, before they take another cause of action.


Dr. Schram has not been allowed back into the country because of visa related problems.


In a previous forum last week, the Acting Vice Chancellor John Pumwa said they had submitted all of Dr. Schram’s documents and are still waiting for government’s response.


All this comes after another series of related events. Earlier the administration asked Ken Polun the Unitech Head of Maintenance to resign after he spoke out on the issue, then in Port Moresby David Arore removed as Higher Education Minister.


Meanwhile the Morobe Governor Kelly Naru has urged students to return to class as soon as possible.


While the boycott may have grabbed the government’s attention at least for now it’s not expected to have major impact on Lae city of Papua New Guinea as a whole.


But the students have warned that if the government does not respond to what was initially very simple issue, it could spill over.


Meanwhile, new Higher Education Minister Delilah Gore said she would be talking to the prime minister tomorrow on the Unitech issue.

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