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Minister must widen polytech slush fund scrutiny

Hon Bill English National Education Spokesman

6 August 2004

Minister must widen polytech slush fund scrutiny

More polytechnics should be investigated after revelations of a funding scam involving millions of dollars at Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology, says National's Education spokesman, Bill English.

"Steve Maharey must make good on his tough talk and widen his scrutiny of enrolments."

Mr Maharey says he will try to retrieve more money from CPIT after an investigation raised serious questions about the validity of community education enrolments approved by the Tertiary Education Commission.

Mr English says CPIT is not the only offender, nor the worst.

"The CPIT scam has proven that TEC's funding decisions can't be relied on.

"Mr Maharey must widen the scrutiny of community education enrolments to the other big spending polytechnics, such as:

o Tairawhiti Polytechnic: $21.7 million, 47,410 enrolments. o Manukau Institute of Technology: $15 million, 29,048 enrolments o Ucol; $10.5 million: 19,760 enrolments o Eastern Institute of Technology: $7.8 million, 32,292 enrolments o Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi: $6.9 million, 12,800 enrolments

"It is inconsistent and politically expedient for the Minister to talk tough with CPIT if he is not prepared to apply the same level of scrutiny elsewhere," says Mr English.


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