ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa has written a letter to President Asif Ali Zardari to call a board meeting of the International Islamic University and take notice of the declining ranking of the university.

“Six months have elapsed since the Board of Trustees of the International Islamic University…met on December 11, 2023, but minutes of such meeting are still awaited. Reminders…have been ignored by the university administration. The Board had decided that its next meeting be held in April 2024, but till date, it has not been convened. The board had noted, with concern, several aspects of maladministration and the university’s decline, including its ranking. The International Islamic University Ordinance, 1985 mandates periodical meetings of its statutory bodies, but these too have not been held,” CJP Isa, who is a member of the board, informed President Zardari, who acts as the chancellor of the university.

“The board of governors has not met in nine months; violating section 20 of the ordinance, which mandates that its meetings have to be held at least every three months. Other statutorily mandated meetings are also not held. [The] director general, deans, and chairpersons continue to act on an ad-hoc basis and till further orders, which is in complete violation of the ordinance, the statutes of the university, and good practice. Instead of rectifying the wrongs, which were also highlighted in the board’s meeting, the administration is obstinately persisting and perpetuating them. This is not the way to run any institution, let alone a public sector university on which huge amounts from the public exchequer are spent,” he stated.

“The Board in its meeting had noted serious allegations against Dr. N. B. Jumani but he remains indispensable, which brings into question what services he and Mr Alhasan, another noted recalcitrant, render. The administration continues to patronise those against whom serious complaints of sexual harassment have been made,” the letter said.

Letter addressed to President Zardari says varsity admin ‘perpetuating’ wrongs

According to the CJP’s letter, the president of the varsity in March this year stated in a letter to the chancellor that the decisions of the board ‘hold no value for me’.

“Could there possibly be a greater affront and transgression by an employee? The sustained and systematic destruction of the University at the hands of its administration must not be perpetuated,” he said.

“The board in its June 2020 meeting had directed the university to propose the criteria for the appointment of the president of the university, but this decision has not been implemented and the criteria are still awaited after over four years. To arrest the further decline and destruction of the university, a meeting of the board be called to consider steps to be taken to stem the rebellion by the university’s administration and to consider the appointment of a new president of the university,” the letter added.

According to the letter, Hathal Homoud Alotaibi’s term expires on July 16 this year and the law does not permit extending the tenure of the president. “As a member of the board, I am deeply concerned and I am sure my concerns are shared by all other members and by yourself,” the letter concluded.

Published in Dawn, June 14th, 2024

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