The Higher Education Commission of Pakistan has re-advertised the position of Executive Director, after revising the requirement of PhD qualification for the prospective candidates.
The position of HEC ED has been vacant since last year October, after the previous ED Dr Arshad Ali resigned from the position due to alleged plagiarism charges. After the resignation of Dr Ali, HEC’s China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project consultant Lt Gen (R) Asghar was given the additional charge of HEC ED.
Earlier, the job position was advertised in January, however, no candidate was selected for the post by the committee which included five members. According to official sources, the committee failed in hiring a suitable candidate because of the previous condition i.e. PhD qualification. The requirements for the position has now been revised, and the condition of holding a doctorate has been changed. The Official added that HEC ED worked as the secretary of HEC governing body, headed HEC Secretariat and served as the principal accounting officer for more than Rs90 billion.
According to the HEC Ordinance 2002 and HEC Rules 2009, “the competent authority for the appointment of HEC Executive Director is HEC, the commission, not any individual, and all terms and conditions for this post should be determined by 18 members governing body. “Moreover, according to the HEC rules, the qualification criterions for the post of ED included an advanced degree, preferably doctorate, in any discipline with work experience with the government, community and elected officials.
The conditions mentioned in the ad for the ED post states, “BS/MA/MSc degree (16 years of education) in any discipline. PhD would be preferred but is not required. A minimum of 20 years’ work experience in government, private sector, civil society or the higher education sector, including at least five years at the senior management level, is required for the post.” The ad also adds that significant academic leadership experience is preferable for the post.
A senior official of HEC said that the commission decided to re-advertise the post, as no suitable candidate was shortlisted by the committee. Moreover, the applicants were asked to fill questionnaires to access their administrative skills, however, the responses of potential candidates were not satisfactory. The official also added that the post of ED has been vacant from a very long time and hence was re-advertised, while merit would be ensured on hiring a suitable candidate for the post.