They reacted to what their Unitech SRC colleagues were doing and illegally barricaded all lecture rooms and staff offices.
They held the UPNG in ransom for one week, demanding that Prime Minister Peter O’Neill step down without even having a clear communication strategy to achieve their objectives.
They infringed on both the students’ and staffs’ rights to attend to their classes and work.
The SRC demanded that the Prime Minister or his delegate come to UPNG and receive their petition.
Upon realising that O’Neill was not at hand to receive their petition, they refused to deliver the petition.
Why did they specifically demand the PM to physically receive the petition when Minister responsible for higher learning institutions was on hand to receive it?
The SRC president reneged on his request for the Prime Minister or his delegate to receive the petition.
According to the UPNG Senate decision, the student boycott from May 2 to May 6 was deemed illegal since both the staff and students were intimidated and coerced to stop classes and work.
The Senate ordered that students immediately return to classes on Monday, May 9.
However, most of the genuine students and staff who turned up for classes and work found out that selfish individuals forcefully locked classrooms and offices and had broom sticks pushed into their locks. How childish are these few rogue students who are preventing classes and work from resuming?
The students have made our intention known to the public that we demand respect for the rule of law.
Therefore, the SRC should liaise with the Ombudsman Commission, Transparency International, Community Coalition Against Corruption to push their case.
Let us not keep national issues to ourselves at the demise of our studies. Through such alliances we can collectively educate the public on institutional corruption in PNG.
We should also return to classes and find better solutions to the problems and challenges that PNG faces.