The academic and non-academic staff of the Solomon Islands National University agreed to return to work tomorrow as their case against the Vice Chancellor has now been referred to the Trade Dispute Panel.
The associations’ are calling on students to also return to class tomorrow (Wednesday 8th July)
A spokesperson for the two associations, Lecturers’ Association of Solomon Islands National University LASINU, and the Solomon Islands National University General Staff Association, SINUGSA said they settled to return to work tomorrow after the dispute has been referred to the Trade Dispute Panel (TDP). The Trade Dispute Panel will meet on Monday to hear the dispute. The associations are demanding the removal of VC Dr. Ganesh Chand.
LASINU and SINUGSA expressed serious concern about the way the Vice Chancellor is conducting the administrative and financial affairs of the University, describing the Vice Chancellor’s actions and decisions as reflecting outright nepotism, corruption, and coated with clear personal business and commercial interests.
Late last month they had written to the Chairman of SINU Dr. Culwick Tongamana to sack Dr. Chand within seven days of receiving their complaint. But the chairman declined to fire the Fijian stating that he does not have the power— except for the Council — instead he urged the SINU associations to follow the appropriate procedures to addressing disputes at the university based on the SINU Act. On Friday following the non-removal of the VC, the associations stood by their decision and withdrew their services from the university. That carried on into yesterday. The associations had then demanded that the chairman suspends the VC whilst he is being investigated but he insisted that he does not have the power to do that. The dispute has now been referred to TDP and this afternoon LASINU and SINUGSA members agreed to return to work as the matter is now before the TDP.
SBMOnline understands that LASINU and SINUGSA’s next action will be determined by the outcome of the hearing.
In the meantime, the association are calling on university students to resume classes by tomorrow.