The degree certificate being paraded by one of the top officials of the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs is presently in contention after the Ahmadu Bello University, Kaduna State, failed to confirm its authenticity.
SaharaReporters learnt that the official in the ministry’s Directorate of Technical Cooperation in Africa, identified as Steve Shaku, is alleged to be parading a fake ABU’s Bachelor of Science certificate from the Department of International Studies.
Sources also told SaharaReporters that the officer submitted the ABU certificate, dated February 1999 bearing ‘Stephen Shaku’ to DTCA, but bears ‘Steve Shaku’ in the agency’s official documents.
SaharaReporters gathered that Shaku’s name was not reflected nor contained in the university’s Order of Proceedings for 1998/1999, 1999/2000 and 2000/2001 for graduating students.
“The name of Stephen Shaku couldn’t be found on the list of International Relations graduates for these years,” a source told SaharaReporters.
“His name was not reflected or contained in the Order of Proceedings for 1998/1999, 1999/2000 and 2000/2001. He submitted a certificate bearing Stephen Shaku but bears Steve Shaku in DTCA official documents.
“While his name is not on the Order of proceedings containing approved names of graduating students, it was also discovered that the signatures of the university’s Vice Chancellor and Registrar on his certificate differ significantly from those on the certificates of other graduating students.
“Check these other certificates; they were duly signed by the then Vice-Chancellor, Professor Abdullahi Mahdi, who took over from General Mamman Kontagora in July 1998, and the then Registrar, Mr. Mairiga Mani,” the source added.
SaharaReporters since the first week of July got across to the university to confirm if it issued the degree certificate being paraded by the top official, but the university had yet to give a concise response three weeks after.
ABU’s spokesperson, Auwalu Umar, said in the latest text message on Tuesday, “I have just called the Head of Department, Political Science and International Studies, who told me that they were still checking the academic records. Thank you.”
A few months ago, a certificate scandal had also rocked the institution when some staff members alleged that a syndicate had been issuing fake degree certificates to fraudulent students.
In a letter written to the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Kabir Bala, by some workers attached to the Directorate of Academic Planning, Monitoring and Registry obtained by SaharaReporters, they had explained that one of such instances was a Bachelor of Science in Physics, Second-Class Upper Division certificate, issued to a female student who had already been withdrawn from the school since 2015.
The said female student was withdrawn for poor performance, but the syndicate reportedly helped her to secure the ABU certificate.
The workers had dared the VC to verify their claims from the Physics Department, while alleging that there was a cover-up in some of the affected departments.
The letter had also been copied to the Registrar, Director, Academic Planning, the Academic Staff Union of Universities and the Non-Academic Staff of Universities.