Nigeria Halts Acceptance of University Degrees from Benin, Togo

January 2, 2024
degrees from benin

By Adedapo Adesanya

Nigeria has suspended the evaluation and accreditation of degree certificates from universities in neighbouring West African countries, Benin Republic and Togo.

The Federal Ministry of Education disclosed this in a statement Tuesday morning.

The announcement comes a few days after an undercover report by Daily Nigerian exposed certificate racketeering from a university in Benin Republic.

Mrs Augustina Obilor-Duru, who signed the statement on behalf of the Director of Press and Public Relations of the Ministry of Education, said the decision followed the exposé by the local newspaper.

The Daily Nigerian reporter obtained a degree certificate in Mass Communication from ESGT, a Benin university in Cotonou, established in 2009.

The reporter obtained the degree in six weeks without attending any classes or writing an examination.

He also applied for and was registered to participate in the one-year mandatory National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) scheme with the certificate despite undergoing the scheme some years ago.

According to the reporter, he was able to navigate the system by changing his phone number and email address used during his service year. This allowed him to sidestep the biometric checks.

In reaction to the development, the education ministry said, “This report lends credence to suspicions that some Nigerians deploy nefarious means and unconscionable methods to get a degree with the end objective of getting graduate job opportunities for which they are not qualified.

The suspension, according to the ministry, stands pending the outcome of an investigation involving the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Education of Nigeria and the two countries as well as the State Security Service (SSS) and NYSC.

“The issue of degree mills institutions, i.e. institutions that exist on paper or operate clandestinely outside the control of regulators is a global problem that all countries grapple with.

“FME has been contending with the problem including illegal institutions located abroad or at home preying on unsuspecting, innocent Nigerians and some desperate Nigerians who deliberately patronize such outlets.

“Periodically, warnings have been issued by the Ministry and NUC against the resort to such institutions and in some instances, reports made to security agencies to clamp down on the perpetrators.

“The ministry will continue to review its strategy to plug any loopholes, processes and procedures and deal decisively with any conniving officials.”

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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