Certificate Scam: NANS Benin Republic Wants FG To Reverse Suspension On Varsities

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The President of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS)/Benin, Comrade Ugochukwu Ikenna Favour has appealed to the federal government of Nigeria and affiliate institutions to rethink the suspension placed on tertiary institutions in the Benin Republic and other parts of the West Africa sub-region.

Recall that the Federal Government imposed a ban on several institutions sequel to a recent undercover report by a Nigerian journalist, who exposed fraudulent and shady practices in neighbouring universities over the running of illegal degree mills.

The undercover reporter paid and obtained a degree certificate within six weeks from a Benionise university facilitated by an agent acting on behalf of the university and used the same certificate to mobilise for the National Youth Service Scheme (NYSC) for the second time having done the national service in 2019.

Hon. Ugochukwu Ikenna in a chat with Daily Independent disclosed that the suspension is already giving the over 15,000 legitimate students in various tertiary institutions in the country worries as a result of the ugly development.

The President of NANS, Benin Republic, a final-year student of Computer Science at the Institut Superieur De Communication Et De Gestion (ISCG University), Abbatoir Carrifour, Cotonou, who also spoke on Channels Television, denied knowledge of such certificate syndicate between Nigeria and the Republic of Benin.

He urged the National Universities Commission (NUC), the Federal Ministry of Education and the federal government to speed up investigations into the trans-border certificate scam and bring the culprits to book.

“In my capacity as the President of NANS in the Benin Republic, I have set up a committee to look into the scandal. I have also. contacted the management of the university involved in the issue and if Nigerian students studying in the Benin Republic are involved they will be appropriately punished.

“The issue is affecting a large number of legitimate students studying in the Benin Republic. The government should not visit the sins uncovered by the reporter on the over 15,000 genuine students from Nigeria studying in the country.

“I have been in touch with the two campuses of ISGT in Port-Novo and Cotonou on a fact-finding mission.”

Responding to questions on why he relocated to Benin Republic from the Federal University of Technology Minna (FUTMINNA) to complete his studies, Hon. Ikenna said he had to do so due to prolonged strikes by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and workers unions.

He disclosed that he, as the President of NANS Benin Republic, has never attended to any case of admission scam suffered by any Nigerian student studying in Benin.

He challenged the management of the NYSC and Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) to step up their operational checks to avoid a similar scam that has rubbished the integrity of the country and the citizens who are on legitimate educational pursuits outside the country.

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