Authorities of Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Abia State, are in the process of rectifying certificate-related issues which culminated in the rejection of hundreds of students by the National Youth Service Corp, NYSC.
A source at the NYSC who did not want his name in print told Nigerian Pilot that prospective corps members sent from the university presented at the point of statement of result verification, document which did not reflect the approved course based on which they were admitted into the school ab initio.
It was on account of this that they were turned back, signifying that their certificates cannot be recognised for the purpose of participating in the compulsory one year national service, except all the contentious issues are resolved.
The affected students, who are supposed to be graduates of Accounting, had since then resorted to various forms protests, including alleging that the university authorities deliberately admitted them into the programme even when they knew that the National Universities Commission, NUC, had not approved it.
Explaining the situation to newsmen, vice chancellor of the university, Professor Hilary Edoga said he had since resumption of office in March 1, 2011, made reasonable efforts to correct the anomaly he met in office.
“I resumed work as the vice chancellor on March 1, 2011. On noticing that students were admitted into the Bachelor of Science, Accounting programme without approval from the NUC, I felt terribly bad and started discussing with NUC on how to rectify the problem.
“Actually, the contentious issue here is that the school offers Agric Business with a number of options, including Accounting. Unfortunately, the school decided to admit students into full degree in Accounting and from the letters of the affected students, you find registration numbers with 2007, 2009 and up to 2010.
“These are the students that the NYSC has rejected because they were admitted to read a course yet to be accredited by the NUC. However, as an intervention measure, understanding what the scenario would just as you have now, I wrote to NUC requesting them to come for resource verification, which is a necessary step towards fully approving the programme for the school,” Prof Edeoga narrated.
Meanwhile, the NUC is yet to respond to the various appeals by the authorities of the university to rescind its decision and backdate the approval so that the situation does not degenerate to full blown crisis.
The executive secretary of the commission, who spoke to a gathering of journalists on the development, did make any commitment, but said the commission was aware of the problem.

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