The Cooks campus backed Professor Ahluwalia when he was suspended. The row escalated at the main campus in Suva, Fiji, with students holding protests and staff striking.
Cook Islands News obtained a letter signed by 11 USP professors, supporting Ahluwalia. “We demand management is allowed to remove corruption, fraud and gross misconduct from within USP following due process and without interference,” they wrote.
The institution’s highest decision-making body was to determine whether the executive committee’s decision to suspend Ahluwalia was valid.
According to student publication Wansolowara, it was after seven hours of long discussion that the Council set aside the suspension of Ahluwalia, stating it was “not persuaded that due process was followed” in the suspension of the vice chancellor.
Local campus director Dr Debi Futter-Puati said they were very happy to see that Professor Ahluwalia had been reinstated.
They knew him to be a staunch advocate of regional campuses and he understood the support each regional campus provided to their respective governments in the development of highly skilled human resources.
“We sincerely hope that he can be given the opportunity to do the job he was employed to do and strengthen policies, processes and practices of the USP,” Futter-Puati added.