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Exam fixing at NUL shocking

REVELATIONS that the police are investigating officials at the National University of Lesotho (NUL), for allegedly tampering with students’ examination results, came as a shock to us.
It is alleged that some students bribing officials at the university to tamper with their grades. For instance, if a student had attained Grade C in the exam they would bribe officials within the system to change the grade to an A.
If it is confirmed the scam has huge implications for the embattled university that has for so long lived in the shadow of scandal and controversy.
We urge the police to leave no stone unturned in their bid to get to the bottom of this mess. Those found on the wrong side of the law must be subjected to the full force of the law.
While it is not everyone at NUL who is corrupt to the bone we believe it is these few individuals who give the university a bad name.
We are convinced that these individuals should be nowhere near a university.
The university must therefore decisively deal with this examination scandal because its reputation and credibility is at stake.
Besides, exams are important in assessing whether a student has met the expected benchmarks in his studies.
But when a student bribes his way to academic success it renders the whole education system virtually useless.
The whole process — of sitting exams, marking and grading — needs to be kept above board. Any compromise along the way renders the whole education system suspect.
A university is also judged on the basis of the quality of its graduates.
Given that this scandal has been going on for some months it means we probably have scores of NUL graduates who got jobs and promotions they probably did not deserve.
Some of these corrupt students might be pursuing their studies at Masters’ and Doctorate levels, when in reality they never deserved to be pursuing such studies.
This is a major scandal with serious implications for Lesotho and its future. This is why we want to see a full investigation that nips in the bud this culture of fakery that we have cultivated in recent years.
As we have argued on this page in the past the problem of fake documentation is a national one. We have fake birth certificates, fake drivers’ licenses, fake passports, fake work permits and fake academic certificates.
Unless we put a stop to this culture of cheating we will never progress as a nation.
We are aware that the police, to their credit, recently launched a crackdown on fake certificates.
The crackdown came after the discovery that at least 43 students had gained entry at Limkokwing University after they submitted fake certificates.
Two officials from the Examination Council of Lesotho were arrested in connection with the scandal.
We believe these arrests are critical in sending a clear message to the corrupt among us that exam cheats will be caught and that there is a zero-tolerance for these criminal activities.
Industry must be left in no doubt that when they recruit from our universities they are getting the real deal, not quacks.

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