PNG University To Charge Students Increased Fees To Recoup Costs Of Shutdown

Government yet to release $3.7 million promised to UPNG, Chancellor says

By Luke Kama

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, Jan. 5, 2017) – Student attending the University of PNG will have to foot the cost of the revised 2016 academic year because the Government has not released the K12 million [US$3.7 million] it promised.

Acting Chancellor Dr Nicholas Mann told The National yesterday that “operational cost for the extended academic year as a result of student protest will now be passed onto the students because the Government did not release the funds as promised to cater for the cost incurred”.

This means a revised fee structure which students must pay upfront it they are continue their studies starting on January 15.

He said the Government through the National Executive Council had promised to release K12 million.

“But we have not seen any money released into the coffers of UPNG yet,” Mann said yesterday.

He said it could be held up in the Finance Department and Treasury.

Chief Secretary Isaac Lupari and Prime Minister Peter O’Neill had said last month that funds for UPNG and the University of Technology in Lae would be released before the close of Government accounts.

Mann said because the Government funding was not forthcoming, the university council met on Dec 29 and came up with two options.

“One was to closed the revised academic year for 2016, forget about it and the students don’t graduate. Those who are supposed to complete their studies in 2016 don’t complete their studies,” he said.

“Or we continue and somebody has to pay for the cost. Therefore council agreed in the meeting on Dec 29 that students will have to meet the cost.”

He said the fees for 2017 had been adjusted and students would be informed of the new fees.

“They will have to pay the fees early so that what the Government did not meet can be met by the students and (their) sponsors. It’s only fair to do that way, instead of terminating the 2016 academic year. This is the decision that we have reached.”

The National
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