MY SAY : NUS Mess Stinks. Clean It Up. Fast

About the author:

Mataeliga Pio Sioa, Newsline Samoa newspaper editor. A veteran journalist in broadcast and print media.

  • BRIGHT MINDS IN DANGER  Lecture room at the NUS packed with the young bring minds at risk of being taught by frauds
    BRIGHT MINDS IN DANGER Lecture room at the NUS packed with the young bring minds at risk of being taught by frauds

Our National University of Samoa is supposed to be one of our main sources of national pride.

But these past few months or so the pride has been bruised. Badly bruised.

Maybe it will be wise for the haematoma to be cleaned out surgically and the leaking blood vessels patched up quickly.

Stop the leaking before the whole institution collapses on its credibility butt.

The Vice Chancellor is suspended  to add to earlier suspensions by senior lecturers. An investigation is underway with the outcome hanging like a dreaded ominous cloud.

A professor from some African country notorious for fraudulent activities was hired to teach medicine until he was found to be a fraud. Surprise! Surprise!

Graduates are complaining their hard earned degrees from the Le Papaigalagala Campus are worthless outside of Samoa.

Even the regional University of the South Pacific is reportedly slamming the door on them too.

How did our highest Institution of Pride and Glory sink into this stink hole?

For now it is prejudicial to delve into the activities of disrepute the Vice Chancellor and his lecturers maybe implicated in, while the outcome of the investigation is pending.

We may still come to it when it is done and the damage revealed.

The hiring of the fraud professor is more than just an embarrassment.  This man was entrusted to teach our young, promising medical minds, the knowledge and skills to save lives.

If he was a fraud what was he teaching our kids? What if these kids practiced in real life what this man taught them?

Thank you Lord for letting us catch this criminal before he corrupted our kids with his poisonous, fraudulent knowledge.

Our only prayer is to help these kids unlearn everything they were taught before they cause harm to the innocent patients and to themselves.

How this fraud slipped through our security system of checks and warnings must be scrutinized very aggressively.

If heads have to roll the executioner has our full blessings.

Should the axe fall on the Samoa Qualifications Authority (SQA) or must other more guilty necks be included as well?

Officially the SQA is our watchdog. The Authority is responsible for sniffing out these fake academics.

What happened? Did they have the flu it clogged up the sniffing nose?

On the other hand the National University hired the professor for its Faculty of Medicine. 

Did they inform the SQA about their new academic staff so they could run a check on him before he was hired?

If the NUS did then the axe should fall squarely on the SQA. If not then the axe should be reversed on the NUS. Maybe it should fall on both.

What are the legal requirements for hiring institutions like the NUS to give the SQA official notification?

Are there any? Is it possible there are but were blatantly disregarded?

Most of the time the bureaucratic tangle of red tapes, turn simple lines of instructions into a busy intersection of communications without traffic lights.

There is so much confusion whether to stop or go, any phony professor daring enough, will simply waltz into the NUS campus and start collecting big pay cheques.

Why should he care what the kids learn or the danger of turning the TTM Hospital into a killing field when they graduate?

This is no simple matter and quite seriously no laughing matter either.

News of frauds teaching at the NUS is not going to do the credibility of our highest learning institution any favour.

Right now, nobody trusts what we are teaching our graduates, if what they are saying about the USP not recognizing our NUS certificates is true.

You don’t have to be an academic with an IQ the size of Mt. Vaea to know that no country will give our University a second look, when they learn that the lecturers are frauds from Africa.

What a major set back for our national efforts.

Trust is something we are supposed to earn. The series of events we are currently going through makes it even harder to earn anything.

For our own sake we must keep going. We have to.

When the USP first started they too were knocked on their backside trying to be accepted into the academic world.

The bulk of the brain mass running our country today is from the regional institution. Look around!  We are not doing too badly.

What we have right now at our NUS is a haematoma.  But we must be very wary that the ugly bruise from the blood loss does not hemorrhage out of control.

We are on the right track already with the investigations, thank heavens.

Clean out it. Be quick about it too.

We have to blow out the stink and the flies before it farts up every hard work we put into it.

We want the Le Papaigalagala Campus to be a bed of blossoming roses if we want to smell like roses to the sceptical snobbish academic world.