The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Thursday met with the registrars of 159 foreign universities in Africa, and accused some of these institutions of selling their certificates for between N300,000 and N500,000 each to unqualified Nigerians.
These unqualified Nigerians, the NYSC added, were thereafter sent in by these corps-producing institutions to participate in the one-year national service.
The NYSC Director General, Brig. Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, said this in Abuja yesterday at a meeting with the registrars of these foreign institutions.
He said henceforth only graduates whose academic certificates were authenticated by the Nigerian consulates in those countries of study would be accepted for national service.
The theme of the meeting was, “Strategies for a successful mobilisation of Nigerian foreign graduates: The role of stakeholders.”
Giving the breakdown of these African-based universities, Ibrahim said 60 of them were based in Republic of Benin, 15 in Cameroon, two in Chad, Ghana 41, Guinea five institutions while four were based in Ivory Coast.
Other universities, he said, were based in Niger, Liberia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Uganda and Togo.
The NYSC DG said, “We have observed in recent years that the quality of graduates presenting themselves for mobilisation for the national service from foreign institutions, especially in Africa, did not meet the needed manpower quality to actualise our national dream.
“In recent times, there has been an upsurge in the number of graduates who cannot defend their degree certificates. Some tertiary institutions simply sell their degree/ Higher National Diploma certificates to persons who never passed through any academic rigour.
“We have evidence of persons who possess originals of such certificates and transcripts from some universities that are represented here.
We have reliably been informed that such certificates and transcripts cost between N300,000 and N500,000.
“In order to check this ugly trend of certificate racketeering, we strongly recommend that the Federal Ministry of Education should liaise with the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ensure that all degree and HND certificates obtained outside the shores of Nigeria are authenticated at the Nigerian consulate in the country of study.