#SexForGrades: SERAP threatens to sue UNILAG as Nigerians react to video

Unilag senate house [PHOTO CREDIT: unilag.edu.ng ]
Unilag senate house [PHOTO CREDIT: unilag.edu.ng ]

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has threatened to sue the management of the University of Lagos (UNILAG) if the latter’s lecturer caught sexually harassing an undercover reporter posing as admission seeker is not punished.

The lecturer, Boniface Igbeneghu, was exposed in a 13 minutes video clip by BBC Africa where an undercover journalist, Kiki Mordi, disguised as a 17-year-old admission seeker.

The investigation is part of a broader one that uncovers the sex for grade crises in universities in Nigeria and Ghana.

The lecturer, Boniface Igbeneghu, is a former sub-dean of Faculty of Art and head pastor of local Foursquare Gospel Church.

In a part of the 52-minute documentary to be premiered on Monday evening, released on social media, the lecturer started by inviting the ‘student’ for a second meeting where they held prayer session together till he asked her for a kiss and romance.

Although the university spokesperson, Taiwo Oloyede, told BBC that the institution has zero-tolerance for such sexual harassment, she did not provide any response to the “cold room” allegation when PREMIUM TIMES contacted on Monday.

However, in a thread posted on Twitter, SERAP called on the university authorities to immediately suspend Mr Boniface within seven days or face legal actions.

“BREAKING: We’re today asking the University of Lagos authorities to promptly & thoroughly investigate allegation of #SexForGrades involving senior lecturer, Faculty of Arts, & head pastor of a Foursquare Gospel Church in Lagos, Dr. Boniface Igbeneghu.

“We’re asking UNILAG to immediately suspend Dr Igbeneghu pending the outcome of any investigation & to identify ALL lecturers allegedly involved in this illegality & bring them to justice. If UNILAG fails to do this within 7 days, we’ll take appropriate legal action to compel them,” the advocacy group wrote on its Twitter handle.

Reactions

Various reactions have trailed the 13-minute clip as Nigerians await the full documentary of lecturers who harass students sexually.

While some lamented the alarming spate of sexual harassment in the education system, many called on authorities to act and curb the menace.

See some of the reactions below.

@DrJoeAbah
Well done for this @kikimordi. #SexForGrades is just plain wrong. Arguments that it is some students that offer #SexForGrades is silly. Even if they offer, the lecturer should say No. We should be able to trust teachers with those they teach. I look forward to the documentary. 👍🏽 https://t.co/eW2g2Ul1K0

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https://twitter.com/DrJoeAbah/status/1181062064057589760?s=19

@Dipo Awojide
Great job BBC Africa and everyone involved. Students should never be sexually harassed or intimidated by folks in power, Lecturers and Academics. Now, we need the regulators like NUC and others to enforce institutional changes. #SexForGrades

@Oroboghene
Missing scripts. Bad grades. Extortion. Blackmail. Extra years.

Some do it shamelessly. Yes, there are girls that willingly drop, but we have many oda girls who are frustrated until they have to give in. SU, Omo to Shan, if they want you, it takes grace to escape.

#sexforgrades

@ChiomaChuka
I remember the lecturer (first degree) who failed me on a course I loved so much I still reference till today. I knew that wasn’t my score. My friends knew it too.

When I went to him to dispute the result, he said, “so now I finally have your attention.”
#SexForGrades

@fisayosoyombo
Let’s name and shame those sex-for-marks lecturers exposed by #BBCAfricaEye #SexForGrades trailer.
1. Dr. Boniface Igbeneghu, Unilag
2. Dr. Paul Kwame Butakor, University of Ghana

There will be more names when the full video is out. Let’s name and shame, not just watch and talk.

@AustinYugo
Dr Boniface Igbeneghu.
Former Sub Dean, Faculty of Arts.
Unilag Senior lecturer.
Foursquare Pastor.
Serial abuser.

UNILAG and NUC must use this guy as an example to stop other lecturers from harassing women.

Sack him. #SexForGrades

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