Inquiry call baffles VC Pal

Prof Pal Ahluwalia. Picture: FT FILE

After five investigations where he was cleared of any misconduct, University of the South Pacific (USP)vice-chancellor Professor Pal Ahluwalia said he was puzzled by recent remarks by Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum in relation to a commission of inquiry into the university.

“They have conducted five investigations into allegations of misconduct which I have been cleared of – and all these came about after the BDO Report came out – where I had made allegations into serious issues at USP,” he said, speaking to The Fiji Times from Samoa.

Prof Ahluwalia said there were 59 allegations made against him in total and in each instance he was cleared after investigations were conducted into the allegations by credible agencies such as KPMG.

“The allegations are all the same.

“There were 26 allegations against me which they started a committee to investigate which found nothing, and then there were 33 allegations which led to my suspension and then being reinstated because there was no evidence of mismanagement.

“So each time these things have come up, (the) council has investigated and found there was nothing there.

“So I really don’t know what commission of inquiry they want to do.

“They’ve deported me, I don’t know what else they want to do to me.”

While delivering a ministerial statement on USP in Parliament last month, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said a KPMG report found instances where Prof Ahluwalia had seriously breached the authority of the VC.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said Prof Ahluwalia’s appointment as VC was “illegal” and Fiji would not contribute any grants to USP as long as he was VC.

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