President calls for study on lecturer requirements, vacancies to be filledView(s):
President Ranil Wickremesinghe has called for a study on the requirement of lecturers to universities, and the commencement of filling vacancies.
The directive was given following a meeting with the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA), where a string of issues faced by academic staff and universities were taken up for discussion.
Education Minister Susil Premajayantha who attended the meeting told Education Times that as an immediate measure, steps would be taken to fill 450 vacancies while continuing with the study about the shortages.
He said initial estimates show that there were some 3,000 vacancies caused by retirement, travelling overseas for further studies, and those who left their posts without informing universities.
He said that a directive was issued by the President to submit a Cabinet paper to fill vacancies, after carrying out a survey on the vacancies. He added that the filling of vacancies will commence shortly.
Chairman, University Grants Commission, Prof Sampath Amaratunga said that the requirement to fill vacancies has been high with the establishment of new faculties and the increase in intake of students.
Meanwhile, on the issue of imposing taxes on research grants, the President has promised to look into the legal implications and consider the possibility of granting relief.
President Wickremesinghe also said that once the domestic debt restructuring process is completed, they could consider other financial relief to university academic staff. (DWI)
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