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Varsity programmes not accredited

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By Limpho Sello

 

MASERU — Distance learning agents for an Indian-based Lovely Professional University (LPU) are running education programmes that have not been accredited by the Council on Higher Education (CHE).

At least 70 Basotho Students have enrolled with the LPU through Infinity Institute of Management and Technology (IIMT), an education consultancy used by the agents.

The consultancy which claims to offer career guidance and counselling says it has been consulted by 2 000 students.

CHE is however concerned that the university might be a bare-born college.

CHE chairperson Professor Mokaeane Polaki said it is important for them to register with the council so that their programmes can be assessed.

Polaki said if IIMT registers students to enrol into LPU then it has to register with CHE.

CHE’s work is to assess higher learning institutions on the quality assurance system and programme accreditation.

It is not easy to know if an institution is offering quality programmes if it has not registered with CHE and been assessed.

Polaki said students who have registered with LPU through these agents do not have the means to know if the programmes offered meet the internationally required standards or not.

The IIMT Marketing Manager, Lekhooa ’Matli, told the Sunday Express on Friday that they cannot register with CHE because they are not a higher learning institution but an educational consultancy.

’Matli said there has been a misunderstanding between them and CHE.

He said they wrote to CHE explaining that they are not a college.

He said they are only agents between Basotho students and LPU.

LPU gave IIMT rights to counsel the students of Lesotho and offer services on its behalf.

He said although the students are learning from India they sit for exams at IIMT, which is based in Happy Villa, Maseru.

He said IIMT is just an access point.

’Matli said the students pay their fees into the IIMT account.

“We do not offer educational classes but facilitate distance education services for LPU,” said ’Matli.

Matli added that they work as marketing consultants for the Indian University.

He also said the Indian university is accredited in India and is recognised by Distance Education Council (DEC) and has over 30 000 students on the campus.

The Indian university offers various courses from Diplomas, Bachelor Degree and Masters of Information Technology, Bio Technology, Microbiology, Computer Application among others.

’Matli could however not answer how Basotho students could be assured that LPU offers quality programmes according to Lesotho’s standards if it is not registered with CHE.

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