Executive Council member Arthur Li Kwok-cheung has blamed the recent decline of local universities in international rankings on professors who are not doing their job, Ming Pao Daily reported Wednesday.
“If a professor fails to do his job properly, that is to teach his students and work hard on his research projects, and instead devotes much of his time at radio shows, the whole world will see it and downgrade your university ranking,” Li said at a recent DBC radio talk show.
Li, who was recently appointed to the University of Hong Kong’s governing council, declined to say who he was referring to, but added that “everyone could see who is doing what”.
The former education minister also dismissed as mere speculation reports that he was being groomed as the next chairperson of the HKU Council. He said his priority would be to fulfill his current duties.
Asked whether Johannes Chan Man-mun, former dean of the HKU Faculty of Law, should be named the university’s pro-vice-chancellor, Li said a host of factors should be considered, and all external parties, including Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, should not intervene in the academic institution’s internal affairs.
On Hong Kong independence, Li said it was a ridiculous idea as the territory could never become independent, adding that it even has to rely on the mainland for water.
He made the remarks when asked about Leung’s condemnation of articles published in the HKU Students Union’s newsletter Undergrad that promote Hong Kong independence.
“The idea of independence is like narcotics,” Li said.
He acknowledged that Hong Kong society is getting more divided, but said he hoped people could still engage in rational discussions.
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