Know More About Those Behind USP Saga

Several personalities have emerged in the ongoing University of the South Pacific (USP) saga.
25 Jun 2020 10:17
Know More About Those Behind USP Saga

Several personalities have emerged in the ongoing University of the South Pacific (USP) saga.

Most are experts in their respective areas of work, and their aim is to achieve the university’s vision: to be a university of excellence, highly regarded locally, regionally, and internationally.

The council is the executive governing body of the university.

Who are these high-profile individuals who are featuring in current issues:

Winston Thompson

  • Pro-Chancellor and chair of council
  • December 2018 – On to his second term, which ends next year.

Mr Thompson worked as a Fijian civil servant for 38 years. He served as Permanent Secretary for a number of ministries – Agriculture (1973 – 1978), Finance (1978 – 1983), Public Service (1983 – 1985; 1992 -1994), Tourism, Civil Aviation and Energy (1991 -1992).

He was Fiji’s Ambassador to the United Nations (1985 – 1991) and later as Ambassador to the US and Mexico/High Commissioner to Canada (2009 – 2015).

He was CEO of Telecom Fiji Ltd (1995 – 2005).

Aloma Johansson

  • Deputy Pro-Chancellor and deputy chair of council
  • Chair of Finance & Investments Committee

Ms Johansson is a past president of the Tonga Chamber of Commerce and Industry. She is a business consultant and accountant. She was the first woman to sit on the Tongan Rugby Union and was interim CEO in 2011- 2012.

In 2016, she was one of several women named on the new Oceania Rugby Board.

She was also the first private sector recipient of the New Zealand Prime Minister Fellowship in 2014.

Professor Pal Ahluwalia

  • Vice Chancellor / President

Born in Kenya and educated in Canada where he attained his Bachelors degree and a Master of Arts from the University of Saskatchewan. He completed his PhD at Flinders University in Adelaide, where he later became a Professor of the Politics Department.

He was Pro Vice chancellor at the University of South Australia.

On 14 October 2008, Professor Ahluwalia was appointed a UNESCO Chair in Transnational Diasporas and Reconciliation Studies.

From 2014-2018 he served as Pro Vice Chancellor Research and Innovation at the University of Portsmouth prior to joining USP.

Lionel Aingimiea

Nauru President and Minister for Education.

Mr Aingimiea is a former secretary of justice.

He holds a number of ministerial positions. He was a senior legal trainer with the Secretariat of the Pacific Community Regional Rights Resource Team (SPC-RRRT) in Suva, Fiji. He also taught law at USP for a number of years.

He will succeed President of the Marshall Islands, David Kabua, as chancellor when his term ends next Tuesday.

Mahmood Khan

  • Fiji Government rep on council.
  • Chair of Audit and Risk Committee

Mr Khan is a Chartered Accountant/Consultant with 45 years of experience in Public Practice, Investigations and Governance.

He attained his Bachelors in Commerce at the University of Auckland.

He was an Assurance Partner of BDO, Northland, Chartered Accountants for 30 years until his retirement in 2016 when he returned to Fiji.

He is a member of Fiji Institute of Accountants, Member of Institute of Aust/NZ Chartered Accountants and a member of New Zealand Institute of Directors.

He currently serves as a director on the boards of the Pacific Fishing Company PTE Ltd and Fiji Revenue and Customs Services. He chairs the Audit and Risk Committees of all three boards.

Edited by Ivamere Nataro


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