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A rocky start for USP’s new Vice Chancellor

WITH the leak of a damaging internal report about the University of the South Pacific, which details allegations of widespread abuse and questionable appointments—including speedy promotions and the unilateral renewal of certain staff contracts—does the future of the regional institution hang in the balance?

It’s an emphatic yes if you ask Winston Thompson, retired Fijian diplomat and current Pro Chancellor of the USP. He believes that in Professor Pal Ahluwalia, USP’s new Vice Chancellor and President, the USP is not in safe hands.

“Do you want to sack him,” Islands Business asked Ambassador Thompson in a recent interview.

“Yes I want to,” he replied.

“Do you have the powers to sack him,” IB asked.

“No I don’t,” was the response.

“But didn’t you head the committee that selected Professor Ahluwalia in the first place,” we asked.

“Yes, that’s the unfortunate thing,” answered Thompson, before adding: “But this was before this other trait of him was noticed.”

Professor Ahluwalia is the author of the report that makes a….

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