Reduced tuition at CMU gets little fanfare amid corruption scandal

The entrance to the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU)

The Caribbean Maritime University (CMU) has announced a reduction in tuition fees across all faculties, but the news comes at a time when the institution is marred by scandal.

The Palisadoes-based university’s Students’ Union, which had been lobbying for a reduction in fees for months, was gearing up last Wednesday, October 9, to share news of their successful negotiations with the 4,000-plus student body. 

That breakthrough was largely overshadowed by CMU President Professor Fritz Pinnock getting arrested just hours later by members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).

Embattled CMU President Fritz Pinnock (Photo: Facebook @CMU.edu.jm)

“Your students’ union body is pleased to advise that there has been a six percent reduction in the tuition fees across all faculties,” an advisory from the students’ union stated.

“This consensus was arrived at subsequent to a meeting that was held with the university’s management. The necessary adjustments have been made and students are advised to proceed with their payments,” a section of the advisory continued.

Aerial shot of the CMU, circa 2009 (Photo: Facebook @CMU.edu.jm)

The embattled CMU president was taken into custody along with its legal adviser, Sharen Reid; her husband and former Education Minister Ruel Reid; their daughter, Sharelle Reid; and Brown’s Town Councillor Kim Brown Lawrence.

The five were detained in simultaneous pre-dawn raids at their homes in St. Andrew, St. Catherine, and St. Ann last Wednesday and booked on charges including for breaches of the Corruption Prevention Act, conspiracy to defraud, misconduct in a public office at common law and breaches of the Proceeds of Crime Act.