Department ‘does not know’ who new TUT boss is

2011-08-02 14:24

The higher education and training department (DHET) has not been informed that the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) has a new vice-chancellor, it said today.

It was announced on Friday that acting vice-chancellor Johnny Molefe was being appointed to the post – even though his qualification has been declared invalid by the SA Qualifications Authority.

“We cannot say anything. The department has not been informed of his appointment,” said the department’s acting director-general Gwebs Qonde.

The appointment of the university’s vice-chancellor was a matter for the university’s council, he said.

He denied a Business Day report today that the department had given TUT until Friday to explain why it should not be placed under administration.

“I don’t know where they are getting that,” he said.

In June last year, Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande appointed businessman Dr Vincent Maphai to investigate the university.

Maphai’s report has not been made public. However, DHET spokesperson Muzi Khumalo said one of his recommendations was to place the institution under administration.

Khumalo said that, in terms of the law, Nzimande would have to convene a meeting with the university’s council before he could place the institution under administration.

He did not know if a date had been set or requested for such a meeting.

He said that “engagements” between TUT and the department were taking place on issues raised in the report.

Today, Business Day quoted former university council member Dr Adele Gordon as saying that a task team investigated Molefe’s qualifications in 2007.

It reported that no local or international body was willing to recognise his doctorate in business administration from St George’s University International, which no longer existed.

Khumalo said he was aware of the issue surrounding Molefe’s doctorate, but said he could not comment until Nzimande had “met with the parties concerned”.

Comment could not immediately be obtained from TUT.

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