MANAMA: An investigation has been ordered into allegations that a large number of private and public sector employees hold fake degrees from fictitious universities.
His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa yesterday directed the Higher Education Council (HEC) to inquire into reports of fake qualifications, which might have been obtained from overseas fictitious or unaccredited universities.
It comes after the GDN reported on exclusive documents showing that many employees of different nationalities used fake bachelor’s and master’s degrees to secure important positions.
The Premier also issued an edict yesterday reforming the Academic Accreditation Committee, which will be chaired by HEC’s secretary general for assessment and accreditation. It will consist of 10 members for a four-year renewable term.
The Prime Minister instructed the HEC to ensure, through the committee, that those who applied for jobs using fake degrees were not holding any senior positions in the public or private sector.
He also told the HEC to co-operate with relevant authorities to ensure those who obtained fake degrees were not applying for jobs or promoted.
Education Minister Dr Majid Al Nuaimi commended the Premier’s directives and vowed zero tolerance in dealing with any fake certificates.
He highlighted measures taken by the council over the past years against universities violating the law. He cited the case of a Bahrain-based university whose licence had been revoked for tampering with students’ degree certificates.
“The Higher Education Council takes action, every year, clamping down on universities whose academic programmes and specialties fail to meet the regulations,” he said.
The National Accreditation Committee assesses degrees obtained from overseas universities. He said the accredited qualifications represent a condition sine qua non for candidates to be employed by government departments overseen by the Civil Service Bureau, affirming that no certificates are approved unless they meet the terms and conditions.