Academic year cancelled at University of PNG

6:06 pm on 5 July 2016
Students at the University of Papua New Guinea have been boycotting classes in protest at the Prime Minister refusing to stand down.

Students at the University of Papua New Guinea have been boycotting classes in protest at the Prime Minister refusing to stand down. Photo: Supplied / UPNG4PNG

After two months of student protests, the University of Papua New Guinea has cancelled the academic year.

In an announcement on Tuesday afternoon, the University Council said all students would have to vacate the campus by Saturday.

Led by the Student Representative Council, most of the university's students have been boycotting classes since May in protest at the Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill's, refusal to stand down from office to face corruption charges.

The protests took a violent turn last month, when police opened fire on students who were trying to march on parliament in support of a no-confidence motion against Mr O'Neill.

Our correspondent in Port Moresby, Rose Amos, said the Student Representative Council has also been dissolved.

"The SRC, they were given the powers to organise students, call forums and all those student gatherings," she said.

"Now that things have got out of hand with all the recent unrest and all of that, the council has decided to terminate the SRC constitution."

Rose Amos said the campus remained calm, albeit with a heavy police presence.

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