Sat | Sep 23, 2017

UWI, UTech to account for spending before parliamentary committee

Published:Friday | September 23, 2016 | 9:00 AM

Jamaica's two leading tertiary-level institutions, the University of the West Indies (UWI) and the University of Technology (UTECH), have been called before a parliamentary committee to account for how they have been spending taxpayers' money.

The Public Administration and Appropriations Committee of Parliament (PAAC) made the decision on Wednesday during a meeting involving officials from the education ministry.

The ministry and several of its agencies appeared before the committee, but when the meeting ended, most of the agencies that were present had not had a chance to be fielded questions from the committee.

PAAC Chairman Dr Wykeham McNeill then asked the committee to select key agencies in line with national priorities that should be asked to reappear over the next two weeks.

"Is it that the University of the West Indies and the University of Technology, which are not directly [funded by Government], but there are heavy subventions [should be added to the list]? Do they ever appear here? Is there ever a discussion with them just to see how the funds are being spent?" the chairman asked.

Members, with McNeill's recommendation, said they wanted UTech and UWI to appear to explain how they have been using money allocated to them from the national Budget.

The PAAC has scheduled to discuss primary and early-childhood education next week, with the universities to appear the following week.