12 Aug 2003

Vice Chancellor at PNG Tech University appeals for calm

2:27 pm on 12 August 2003

The Vice Chancellor of Papua new Guinea's University of Technology is urging students not take the law into their own hands.

Misty Baloiloi made the call after a weekend of violence in which a student was stabbed to death at the university main entrance, another was attacked and a third student was shot in the leg, allegedly by police several hours later.

In retaliation, students and relatives of the dead student burnt down six houses at the nearby East Taraka suburb.

Mr Baloiloi was handed a petition by students demanding, among other things, the lifting of a university policy that restricted consumption or possession of alcohol on campus.

The students handed their petition to the vice-chancellor, then turned on staff and other students, forcing them to stay indoors.

In response, Mr Baloiloi told the students their demands for the lifting of the restriction on alcohol and an investigation into the alleged shooting by "drunken" policemen were policy issues to be dealt with by the University Council when it sits in August 28.