UWI chancellor appoints commission on governance

Saturday, January 19, 2019

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CHANCELLOR of t he University of the West Indies (UWI) Robert Bermudez has appointed a nine-member commission on governance for the university.

The commission, which is chaired by former president of the Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice Sir Dennis Byron, includes a multidisciplinary team with expertise in law, people, finance and corporate governance.

He said the commission would have an aggressive work plan, and is expected to deliver its final report by the end of September this year.

The terms of reference for the commission are “to examine the performance of UWI — including its management practices, features of transparency and accountability within the university system — and to make recommendations to the chancellor”.

Bermudez, in announcing the appointment of the commission, made reference to its task in this era of global higher education competitiveness, and the commitment of the university to continuous improvement in its delivery of service to the Caribbean.

“The university has had an illustrious past. This commission's work is to ensure that its success and relevance continues into the future.”

A UWI statement said that the chancellor is traditionally responsible for establishing this high-level committee with overall duties to streamline and review the administration of university. The first commission was convened in 1993 and has been conventionally instituted in 10-year cycles.

The statement noted that at the University Council's last annual business meeting in April 2018, it was agreed that a commission be established to review the university's current governance arrangements.

Chairman of the commission, Sir Dennis has articulated an aggressive work plan for the commission, which is expected to deliver its final report by the end of September 2019.

The other members of the commission are attorney Judith Bowen; chairman of Sagicor Group Jamaica, Richard Byles; human resources practitioner, Angela Hamel-Smith; former UWI vice chancellor, Professor Emeritus E Nigel Harris; director general of the St Lucia-based Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, Dr Didacus Jules; and Barbadian-born attorney Sir Elliott Mottley.

The representative of the UWI Intercampus Guild Council and president, Guild of Students, Darrion Narine, and the president of the UWI Alumni Association, Jamaica Chapter, Jacqueline Sharp are also included in the commission.

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