Fiji's president, Ratu Josefa Iloilo, has agreed to become the first Chancellor of the newly-established University of Fiji.
The Lautoka-based University of Fiji was started by the Hindu religious organisation, the Arya Samaj, several years ago and has been strongly supported by Fiji academics teaching at overseas universities.
The Fiji Times online reports that as Chancellor, President Iloilo, will be the titular head of the University of Fiji and will preside over the presentation of degrees and diplomas at it first graduation ceremony this year.
A statement from the university says it is determined to ensure that it makes a significant contribution to the development of Fiji as a unified, well-governed, prosperous and peaceful country, where all citizens feel a strong sense of commitment and loyalty.
The university is to introduce diploma and degree level programmes in Fijian Language and Culture and a post-graduate certificate in diplomacy.