ISLAMABAD - The International Islamic University, Islamabad (IIUI) that has been ranked the 5th largest university by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) recently has been running its affairs without permanent President for the past two years, as President Zardari has no time for educational affairs and its founding Islamic countries have also lost their interest in the institution.

President Asif Ali Zardari, who is a Chancellor of the university, could not spare time to attend the meetings of the Board of Trustees (BoT) that was cancelled thrice after finalisation of all arrangements, as President Zardari was not available.

According to ordinance of the university, BoT selects a person for the position of President from a panel of names recommended by the Rector but the BoT could not meet for the last six years.

Professor Fateh Muhammad Malik, Rector IIUI, said the meetings of Board of Trustees could not be convened since 2006 due to lack of quorum as its founding members who were mostly from Muslim countries have no interest in the institution now. According to the ordinance the Board should meet at least once a year. But after September 11, 2001 the members of the Board have not only stopped funding to the university but also showed no interest in the meetings of BoT whenever called in the pretext of security threats and other concerns. General Zia-ul-Haq was chairman of the Board at that time while the representatives of Muslims countries were mostly from ruling elite and not academics.

Though the Acting President Prof Dr Mumtaz Ahmad, has been looking after the affairs, due to his other engagements, as he also heads the Iqbal International Institute of Research and Dialogue of the university, the administrative affairs of the university have been getting worse. Overall the image of the university has been shattered due to dirty politicking among the employees in the absence of the permanent head.  Recent two incidents of relations between the male and female employees highlighted in the media were also leaked to the media by the employees to settle personal scores that also brought bad name to the institution.

After having no response from the government, the university has found a way out. Professor Fateh Muhammad Malik informed that there is a clause in the ordinance that allows the Chancellor to give appropriate directions on the recommendation of the Rector to remove the difficulties in the implementation of rules, in the light of which the university advertised the post. About 47 application have been received that will be scrutinised by a committee constituted by the Rector having representation of prominent names including HEC officials. The committee will select three names to be sent to the President who will select one name for the post, added Prof Malik saying that the process may take about 15 days to appoint the permanent President of the university.

According to information the university in consultation with the HEC has been considering to make amendments in the ordinance as well to abolish the BoT as they have no role in university affairs now instead making administrative affairs more completed.