The University of Jos (UNIJOS) has suspended one of its academic staff who was allegedly caught cheating while writing an examination on May 4.
Benedicta Daudu, an associate professor of law and former head of the Department of Jurisprudence and International Law of the Faculty of Law in UNIJOS, was allegedly caught copying from a prepared answer during an examination for a Master’s degree in Research and Public Policy in the Faculty of Social Sciences of the same university.
The development was exclusively reported by PREMIUM TIMES newspaper on May 21, frustrating what some staff and student described as a plot by the university to cover up the matter.
After the report, Mrs. Daudu’s membership of the Presidential Advisory Committee against Corruption was immediately suspended.
Insiders at UNIJOS have now said that the lecturer has been suspended from work, and from the masters programme.
“I can confirm to you that the Senate Disciplinary Committee found her guilty of the allegations, and has suspended her from the Masters programme for two semesters,” an official of the university told this newspaper.
“Also, the matter was referred to the Staff Disciplinary Committee which also suspended her from work. So she is no longer teaching.”
Another official of the university said the professor sued the institution over her suspension.
All UNIJOS officials who spoke on the matter asked not be named for fear they might be accused of plotting the professor’s downfall.
Even the spokesperson for the university, Abdullahi Abdullahi, simply said, “Please, please, I have no comment on this matter.”
When contacted by telephone on Monday, Mrs. Daudu, the affected professor said, “Please excuse me, please, please” after a newspaper reporter asked her for updates on her examination malpractice case.
Asked when the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) would allow the professor back to her post, Executive Secretary, Bolaji Owasanoye, said, “Until matter is resolved, she remains away from PACAC.”
The committee, headed by prominent law professor and civil rights campaigner, Itse Sagay, and made up of mainly university professors, is the intellectual wing of Mr Buhari’s anti-corruption war.
The mandate of the committee includes advising the President on the implementation of required reforms in Nigeria’s anti-corruption campaign and criminal justice system.
Although she has a Masters in Law, the associate professor was working towards another masters in Research and Public Policy.
It was later learnt that the department later accused her of sneaking in prepared answers, also referred to as “chokes” by students, during the examination for the Global Context in Public Policy course.