By Romoke W. Ahmad
A former executive secretary of the National Universities Commission, Professor Peter Okebukola, says over 60 percent of project reports of Nigerian undergraduates are plagiarised.
Speaking yesterday at the first Kwara State University Education Lecture, Okebukola said the rate of plagiarism as a form of academic corruption at the Masters level was between 15 and 20 percent and eight percent at the PhD level.
“It’s academic corruption when lecturers don’t show up in classes as required or teach only 10 subjects out of about 20 in a semester, and when students negotiate with lecturers for marks”, he said.
Okebukola said that solving problems in the education sector might be challenging, but not impossible.
“Government must place high premium on education by providing adequate financial resources for the sector. Our institutions of learning must also look for innovative ways to raise funds. The teaching profession must be considered as one of the most important jobs and accorded due regard. The Minister of Education must appeal to state governors to give special emphasis to addressing the problem of low quality of basic education. Also, there is the need for an enabling environment to be created for teachers and students through improved conditions of service, provision of basic infrastructures for the delivery of quality education.
He said Nigerian universities were grossly under resourced in human and physical resources, calling for adequate funding of public educational institutions in the country.
Okebukola also appealed to the Academic Staff Union of Universities to embrace dialogue in resolving the ongoing strike.