Maritime Academy Boss Cast Adrift ({{commentsTotal}})

The Maritime Academy's main building in Tallinn
The Maritime Academy's main building in Tallinn Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

Minister of Education Jaak Aaviksoo has fired Heiki Lindpere, the rector of the Maritime Academy, for mismanaging the budget ahead of next year's merger with the Tallinn University of Technology.

“The academy failed to build its current budget on the basis of last year's income, meaning that they were prepared to use unrealistic income figures. The academy's income in the first eight months has been considerably lower than the budget foresaw. They have not reacted in an appropriate manner - the budget has not been adjusted and new revenue sources have not been found,” a ministry representative told ETV on Thursday.

A state audit found that the academy had spent 79 percent of its income by the end of August, including 98 percent of its day-to-day maintenance budget.

Lindpere has opposed the merger with Tallinn University of Technology, saying that the vocational part of the academy would have to be closed, as a university can not offer vocational training.

The Ministry of Education announced the merger in July, saying that the academy suffers from a lack of qualified staff and is underfinanced. The merger is set to take place in the fall of 2014.