USP journalism awards: Singh wins top award
Minister for Education Heritage and Arts Mahendar Reddy has asked all stakeholders not to jump into conclusions and start condemning USP but to understand the logic behind the action that they have taken.
“USP is within its legal right to ask students to make arrangements to pay their fees. The students must understand that they are already in the 8th week of their studies and there are only a few weeks for the semester to end,” said Mr Reddy. “The USP has a system of reminding students on their fees which are accessible to all students and therefore, it is the responsibility of the students to make arrangements for the payment.” Mr Reddy said USP like any other organization was not in a business of charity. “They have given students ample time to make arrangements to pay the fees,” he said. “The students must have taken heed of this timeframe. “Unfortunately, when this did not transpire, USP is left with no choice as income needs to be recovered because the cost of running the University has to be accounted for.
“There is also the real risk that those failing their units may not show up to pay thus, pushing USP to carry these debts in their books and eventually have it written off.” Meanwhile, the USP Staff Union members yesterday held a protest march at the Laucala campus. About 200 staff marched with banners and placards with the support of students as well regarding the closure of a particular facility next year which would result in the laying off of staff. “We as students are concerned about the situation as we pay high fees every year,” said a concerned student. The staff marched from the tennis court to the entrance of the Vice Chancellor’s office and handed over a petition letter with signatures of the University staff which had all their grievances written on it. USP will issue a statement regarding the issue on Tuesday.
The University of the South Pacific Staff Union members marched at the USP Laucala Campus yesterday.