USP opts for independent inquiry

By Samantha Magick

The University of the South Pacific’s Council says an independent investigation into allegations against its former Vice Chancellor will 
be conducted “on its behalf.”

This was a unanimous resolution of the Council during its meeting in Vanuatu that ended yesterday (17th May).

The Council has also expressed support for an investigation being undertaken by the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) 
into the allegations of mismanagement and abuse of process.

The Council says it will provide further updates to the USP community in “due course.”

The allegations, which were first reported by Islands Business last week, are detailed in a lengthy document which questions allegedly 
speedy appointments and contract renewals for at least eleven senior members of the university staff, most of them Fiji nationals working at 
the main campus in Suva.

This week representatives of the three USP staff unions called for a thorough and independent investigation into the allegations, and asked 
that all those implicated in the leaked report be suspended while the independent inquiry is conducted.

Islands Business’ questions on who will make up the independent investigation and the timeframe of their work have reportedly been referred to USP Council deputy chair, and deputy Pro Chancellor Aloma Johansson.

She has yet to respond by press time.