Higher Education State Minister Rajiva Wijesinghe said today that he should be allowed to work without interference and if the UGC Chairman had to be removed it should have been done after a proper inquiry into the charges levelled against her and not for politically motivated reasons.
He said the policy of the current Government was to take action against an individual after a formal investigation under the common law of the country and not to remove a person from his or her post in an arbitrary manner like the previous government had done.
At a ceremony at the Open University Regional Centre in Polgolla, Kandy last morning the state minister pointed out that he should be allowed to function without interference and that he should have been informed of any decision being taken with regard to the University Grants Commission.
“I have told Minister Kabir Hashim to resolve the concerns faced by the UGC, but to no avail. I have informed the President as well. The allegations against the UGC chairman should have been properly investigated and not done in any politically motivated manner. I have instructed the relevant authorities to investigate the disbursement of funds especially regarding excessive spending at the South-Eastern University and also complained to the Bribery Commission about it.
However, problems will crop up if the Higher Education Ministry takes decisions without my knowledge. Now the UGC is in a crisis and the members are not attending its meetings. If one is responsible for a fraud it should be established through a legal process,” the state minister said. (J.A.L. Jayasinghe)