Fake degrees: FG awaits probe report, threatens culprits’ arrest

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The Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, on Tuesday, said security agencies will go after individuals with fake university certificates in the country.

According to the minister, the individuals will be tracked after the committee set up by the Federal Government to investigate the activities of university certificate racketeers in the country submits its report.

The Federal Government had set up an Inter-Ministerial Investigative Committee on Degree Certificate Milling to probe the activities of certificate racketeers following an investigative report published by Daily Nigerian which exposed the activities of degree mills in the Benin Republic.

The Daily Nigerian reporter, Umar Audu revealed how he obtained a degree within six weeks and even proceeded to embark on mandatory youth service under the National Youth Service Corps scheme back in Nigeria.

The investigative report, which exposed the illegalities perpetrated by some tertiary institutions in the West African countries, led to the Nigerian government placing a ban on the accreditation and evaluation of degrees from Benin Republic and Togo.

The committee set up by the Federal Government was also tasked with investigating Nigerian private universities established in the last 15 years.

Checks has showed that no fewer than 107 private universities were established in the last 15 years.

Recently, the committee invited memoranda from the public. Selected members of the committee also visited institutions in the Benin Republic.

While speaking at the first quarterly citizens engagement in Abuja on Tuesday, the education minister, Mamman, said, “On the issue of the fake degrees, we set up a committee and we expect them to submit their reports soon. Once the report is submitted, I can assure you that individuals with fake certificates will be apprehended. They will be tracked by security agencies.”

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Also speaking at the engagement, the Minister of State for Education, Dr. Tanko Sununu, noted that the quarterly citizenship engagement was aimed at creating awareness of the activities of the ministry.

He noted that the engagement would “ also promote mutual understanding with stakeholders and citizens, build and sustain public trust, and improve transparency and accountability in the sector.”

“Worthy of mention is that this engagement also aims to improve efficiency and streamline government operations by identifying and addressing bottlenecks,” Sununu said.

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