Lagos, (NG): The Federal Government of Nigeria has announced it intends to suspend recognition of degree certificates and other academic qualifications from Uganda and Kenya countries over integrity concerns.
This decision follows the recent suspension of accreditation for degrees obtained from institutions in Benin and Togo for the same reasons.
“We are not just going to stop at Togo and Benin, we are going to extend the dragnet to countries like Uganda and Kenya where such (fraudulent) institutions have been set up,” Nigeria’s Education minister Prof Tahir Mamman said during an interview with local media on Wednesday.
He added; “They don’t really have physical sites, they are just very clandestine in their operations. But we need to protect our employers and the integrity of our qualifications.”
The move by the Nigerian government comes in the wake of fraudulent qualifications obtained by its nationals from foreign institutions after one Umar Audu, a reporter revealed in an undercover investigation how he obtained a four-year degree programme from a Benin university in under two months and without ever stepping out of Nigeria.
Responding to the report, Prof Mamman said the government had commenced investigations into agencies responsible for accrediting academic qualifications obtained abroad.
“I have no sympathy for those with fake certificates from foreign countries. They are not victims but part of the criminal chain that should be arrested,” he asserted, emphasizing that this measure aims to safeguard Nigeria’s employers and maintain the integrity of the country’s qualifications.
The flagging of Ugandan-awarded degrees inflicts an additional reputational injury on educational standards in the eye of global employers, coming at a time when the government is grappling to address ballooning unemployment at home with the international job market as an alternative.
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