Cultism: DSS Scrutiny Not Threat To Academics

Reactions have continued to trail the recent statement by Governor Nyesom Wike that names of all lecturers at the Rivers State University, Port Harcourt have been submitted to the state security service for profiling over membership of cult group in the institution.

Rector, River State College of Health Science and Technology, Dr Franklin Nlerum told The Vortex in an interview in Port Harcourt that the governor as the visitor to the university and the chief security officer of the state may have his reasons for taking the action.

According to the rector, it is also the right of the governor to hire and sack the vice chancellor of the university or any other head of the institution, stressing that the statute which set up such institutions gives him such powers.

Nlerum however suggested that disciplinary matters relating to staff and lecturers in the institution would better be handled by management of the institutions, and condemned any form of exploitation of students by lecturers in the schools.

He described ‘sorting’ or cash for marks’ by any lecturer as criminal and fraudulent, stating that such practices demeans educational values and also lowers the integrity of a lecturers.

The rector attributed the falling standard of education in the country to the perception of some students that they can always use money to buy marks irrespective of whether they attended classes or not.

Nlerum explained that no incident of cult activities have been noticed in the college but affirmed his commitment to decisively deal with any such group if they are found in the institution.

“Any vice chancellor or head of institution worth his salt should know how to deal with cult cases whenever they exist”, the Rector stated.

The Rector also restated the determination of the college to continue to train credible and quality manpower for the health sector in the state.

Also, a lecturer at the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Dr. G.A. Nwolwiha said the action of the governor in submitting manes of lecturers of RSU was no threat to academic activities in the state, adding that it is only lecturers whose hands are not clean that should entertain fears.

Nwokocha said that while the governor may have taken a very drastic action on the matter, issues of discipline in the school could have been left to the school management who are the employers of the staff to deal with the situation according to extant rules of the institution.

He however called for thorough investigation by the DSS, stating that the exercise should not be used as a witch hunt against individuals.

The lecturer frowned at the allegation of ‘cash for marks’ in the institution, stating that lecturers should see themselves as role models for students.

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