UPNG student leaders fight for boarding rights

The 13 University of PNG student leaders, whose permanent exclusion were stayed by the Waigani National Court, are still fighting to regain their boarding privileges.

One of the student leaders told Loop PNG: “The only problem with some of us fly-in students is that the admin is removing our boarding privileges and it has affected us big time”.

The student leaders were terminated by the UPNG administration due to their alleged involvement in the May to July student unrest. They took the matter to Court and were allowed to resume classes last month.

“We came in two weeks before the (semester 1) exam. Our lecturers were very helpful by being lenient on us and also giving us extensions for our tests and exams,” Loop was told.

However, the students, especially those from the outside provinces, have now found themselves without accommodation.

“We wrote to the admin a good number of times for our boarding privileges to be restored but it has fallen on deaf ears.”

UPNG acting chancellor, Dr Nicholas Mann, explained that: “Boarding is a privilege given to the students who respect the university laws”.

“The university is responsible for educating them. Accommodating and feeding them is an additional responsibility that the university has taken on.”

Dr Mann told Loop PNG that those students have breached the university’s trust therefore “now they have to accommodate themselves or get people to accommodate them”.

UPNG semester 2 starts tomorrow (Nov 7).

Carmella Gware