The acting Director-General of the Ghana Education Service (GES), Mr Michael Nsowah, has called on the police to clamp down on the activities of a syndicate involved in the printing of fake senior secondary school (SSS) certificates used by some persons to gain admission to tertiary institutions.
“We need to clamp down on the activities of those producing the fake certificates. If we don't do that, it will debase the credibility of the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE),” he said.
According to him, now that Ghanaian students were writing the WASSCE, there was the need to protect the certificates to enable the students to continue their studies both locally and internationally.
Mr Nsowah, who was reacting to the widespread use of fake certificates to gain admission to tertiary institutions, said in an interview that as part of the efforts to eliminate the practice, a proposal had been made to the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) to submit the names of those qualified for university admission on compact discs (CDs) to the various universities and polytechnics soon after the WASSCE results had been released.
According to him, the attitude of those behind the fake certificates was undermining efforts to ensure that qualified persons gained access to tertiary education.
Some public universities and polytechnics have, this year alone, sacked about 400 students for entering the institutions through fraudulent means, such as the use of fake certificates.
The Accra Polytechnic, for instance, has dismissed more than 94 fresh and continuing students for using fake certificates to gain admission to the institution.
The polytechnic is still probing 591 other students.
The University of Ghana has also sacked about 160 fresh students so far.
The authorities of the university are still checking the documents submitted by fresh students for admission. Mr Nsowah noted that heads of second-cycle schools had also been asked to insist on checking the original certificates of students before admitting them.
Story by Emmanuel Bonney