1.0 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Universities and colleges need to recognize that they too are businesses (Dr. Brendan Nelson, 2002). Investors, senior executives and the business community have long sought for ways to better control the companies and enterprises they run. As part of a broader micro-economic reform of the public sector, the higher education sector has been targeted for its perceived role for improving the economic status of a nation (Currie &Vidovich,1998; Marginson, 1997b).
Government skeptical about the effectiveness and efficiency of University operations have issued policies and undertaken reviews of the sector with the intention of improving the governance and management of higher education institutions. They have subjected higher education institutions to market mechanisms and greater competition by reducing the proportion of government funding, forcing universities to diversify their funding sources, introduce student fees and increase the accessibility to higher education (Green & Hayward,1997;Hardy,1991; Ramsden,1998). The rationale behind such reforms was that competition would produce better outcomes than government intervention ( Mahony,1996; Marginson,1997b).
In view of the reduced government funding, and the increase in student contributions, governments have argued that universities need to become more accountable for their use of resources. Consequently, the combination of increased competition, decreased funding
and increased demand for enhanced accountability has forced universities to appraise the effectiveness of university finances and the other management and control devices employed (Dopson & McNay,1996; Jones,1994a;Miller,1995). In response, universities have become more corporate or business like, adopting private sector models of organisational structure, management systems, accounting and budgetary control