The country’s universities, according to President Muhammadu Buhari, have alarmingly high rates of sexual harassment, and officials are looking into corrupt practices that include “sex for grades.”
In 2019, the BBC exposed sexual harassment at two institutions in Nigeria and Ghana using an undercover reporter, which generated discussion on social media regarding the issue of “sex for grades.”
Little, according to critics who charge that the government failed to eradicate the practice, has changed since that time.
Buhari, however, stated at an anti-corruption summit in Abuja, on Tuesday, October 4, that the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission was investigating and prosecuting cases of sexual harassment and power abuse in educational institutions.
The President further noted students had come up with language to describe different forms of corruption on campuses.
“There is sorting or cash for marks/grades, sex for marks, sex for grade alterations, examination malpractice, and so on,” Buhari said.
“Sexual harassment has assumed an alarming proportion.”
Buhari said other forms of corruption at universities included lecturers writing dissertations for students for a fee, payment of salaries to non-existent workers, and lecturers taking up full-time jobs in more than one academic institution.
Public university lecturers have been on strike for more than seven months demanding better pay and allowances.
Buhari said “those who go on prolonged strikes on flimsy reasons are no less complicit” in undermining government investment in education.
Meanwhile, President Buhari will on Friday present the 2023 budget estimates to the joint session of the National Assembly by 10 am.
This is contained in a letter Buhari wrote to the President of the Senate, Dr Ahmad Lawan, and read at plenary on Tuesday, October 4.
Lawan said the venue for the presentation of the 2023 budget estimates by Buhari would be at the temporary chamber of the House of Representatives.
According to him, arrangements would be made to accommodate all the senators, adding that senators would proceed to the venue in procession.
Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed said the federal government was proposing an aggregate expenditure of N19.76 trillion for the 2023 fiscal year.