The National Universities Commission has said that there are possibly more than 100 fake professors across Nigerian universities.

Executive Secretary of NUC, Prof Abubakar Rasheed, disclosed this while addressing journalists in Abuja.

Rasheed said, “As part of measures at repositioning our universities, the NUC through its STRADCOM, recently verified and published a full directory of professors in the Nigerian university system.

“In the process of validating the submissions, university Senates have, in some cases, uncovered that quite a number of professors are either fake or are yet to mature to full professors.”

The executive secretary dismissed claims in some quarters that the Federal Government had abolished catchment area as part of criteria for admission into Nigerian universities.

Rasheed said the commission had initiated massive reforms in the last three years  such as curriculum re-engineering, introduction of new programmes, unbundling of some programmes, research and innovation, among others.

He said these were aimed at overhauling the Nigerian university system to bring it to become 21st century-compliant.

Rasheed listed some of the courses unbundled to include Mass Communication, which has been split into seven programmes, as well as Agriculture and Architecture.

He said, “It is absolutely untrue that the Federal Government has abrogated the catchment area as part of the criteria for admission into Nigerian universities.”

The executive secretary expressed concern that in the era of internationalisation of university education, the demographics of the nation’s universities revealed preponderance of over-localisation and over-indigenisation with only a handful of universities having a semblance of national institutions in national spread of workers and students population.

According to him, it was in an effort to improve the national and international output of the universities that President Muhammadu Buhari directed that universities should ensure that all local government areas and states are represented in the admission.

Rasheed added that there were about 61,000 lecturers teaching in Nigerian universities while only about 9,000 of them are professors.

The executive secretary expressed worry about the upsurge in illegal degree-awarding institutions.

He said the commission was compiling a comprehensive list of such universities and working with the National Youth Service Corps to ensure that graduates of such institutions and other mushroom universities from neighbouring countries are not mobilised for the one-year mandatory service.

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