University rectors want NACC to review assets declaration ruling

State university rectors are demanding the National Anti-Corruption Commission to reconsider its ruling requiring university council chairmen and members to declare their assets and liabilities.

The demand for a review of the controversial ruling which has prompted some university council members to quit with many others threatening to follow suit was adopted at a meeting on Wednesday of rectors from Rajabhat and Ratchamongkol Technology universities and other state-regulated universities.

Professor Dr Suchatvee Suwansawat, rector of King Mongkut Institute of Technology, Lat Krabang campus, who chaired the rectors’ meeting, said that the meeting, however, agreed in principle with the NACC ruling about the requirement of assets and liabilities declaration but only for university executives such as rectors and deputy rectors who are responsible for management and have decision-making authority regarding procurement projects.

He said the meeting disagreed that university council chairmen and members should be required to declare their assets and liabilities because they are not involved in management and have no authority over financial matters.

The requirement, said Dr Suchatvee, will be a paperwork burden not just for the non-management council chairmen and members but also for their spouses and children as well.

The 60-day deadline for the declaration is too short and, also, if there are any unintentional errors in the information given to the NACC, they may face criminal charges which may lead to imprisonment, said the professor.

The outcome of the meeting of the rectors will be submitted to the NACC, said Dr Suchatvee, adding that he would also ask for a meeting with the NACC chairman to settle the problem which, if left unresolved, may affect universities and students in the end.

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