DA welcomes the appointment of UNISA administrator

Issued by Chantel King MP – DA Shadow Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation
30 Oct 2023 in News

Note to editors: Please find attached soundbite by Chantel King MP

The DA welcomes the long-awaited appointment of an administrator at the embattled UNISA. UNISA is too big an institution to fail, and the DA hopes Prof Ihron Rensburg is able to sort out the governance and administrative challenges at the university.

Noting the court interdict to hold off on placing UNISA under administration until the outcome of court proceedings, we believe that the institution cannot be left hanging waiting for a dragged-out court case. The academic programme in preparation for the 2024 academic year should not be in disarray due to the in-fighting of UNISA executives (or what is left of the executive) and staff.

The independent assessor, Prof Themba Mosia’s report highlighted the level of governance instability brought about by a culture of bullying, intimidation, and fear, leading to a lack of social cohesion at the institution. It also showed decisions taken by the executive were irrational and lead to maladministration and financial irregularities.

Prof Rensburg should take the findings of Prof Mosia into consideration and recommend to Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande that consequence management be taken against negligent decisions taken by UNISA Vice Chancellor, Prof Puleng LenkaBula, and her executive.

The DA further calls on Minister Nzimande to amend the Higher Education Act to ensure that higher education institutions be subjected to the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA).

Professor Ihron Rensburg will have his work cut out for him to turn UNISA around and we wish him the best of luck.

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