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Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 28, No. 7. 1965.

Priority is for Varsities — Holyoake

Priority is for Varsities — Holyoake

"We Place expenditure on education at the top of our priorities," the Prime Minister, Mr. Holyoake, told the first annual dinner of the University National Club.

"University expenditure has and will continue to have the top priority on a financial basis," he continued.

He pointed out that in the 20 years prior to 1960 there had been an increase in university accommodation sufficient for 2000 students.

"In the following 10 years we will have provided for 10,000 to 14,000 more students," Mr. Holyoake said.

"We fell behind in the three years of the Labour Government —virtually nothing was done," he claimed.

"We have, I think, agreed to every recommendation of the University Grants Committee except one: halls of residence," Mr. Holyoake said, "and that is now being given consideration."

"Can't you and we get the people of Wellington to raise some money for hostels?" he asked.

The first annual dinner of the club was attended by over 100 club members and National Party representatives. A number of MPS were present.

In the absence of the President, Alister Taylor, Mr. P. V. O'Brien acted as chairman. Mr. O'Brien opened the speeches by announcing that he was not a member of the club.

"I never expected at any time that I would attend a meeting of a National Party Club in a university," the Prime Minister said.

Prefacing his speech on "Public Expenditure Priorities for University Education in New Zealand" with a few general remarks, Mr. Holyoake stressed the value of dissent. "Start with the basic premise that everything is wrong," he suggested.

Youth was, he suggested, the time for questioning. "The Government welcomes criticism, particularly where it is constructive," Mr. Holyoake told his audience.