UTG Grade Alteration Scandal: Implicated Staff, Students face punishment

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By Amadou Manjang

The University of the Gambia is set to punish the staff and students implicated in the grade alteration scandal, the office of the registrar says.

It reveals that the university will dismiss and ban staff involved in the scandal as well as recall and revokes the certificates of the implicated students.

“The recommendations of the Disciplinary Committee were considered and approved by the Governing Council at its special meeting held on 2nd September,” the office of the registrar said in a statement.

It added: “Among the recommendations is the dismissal and banning of Dr. John T. Mendy from taking employment in the university for a period of 15 years. The grades of the implicated students will be reversed to their original state before the tampering or alteration.” 

The statement further reveals that the implicated students, whose grades will be reversed to their original state, are allowed to re-sit and regularise their degree certificates and transcripts after the first semester of the 2024/2025 academic year.

‘“The Governing Council reiterated its zero-tolerance policy for misconduct including indiscipline, sexual harassment, insubordination, calumny, and leakages of confidential information,” the office of the registrar states.

In January 2023, it was reported that the grades of some students had been altered or tampered with in the student portal without proper authorization, resulting in denying access rights to the principal suspect to the portal as well as the forming a Fact-Finding Investigative Panel to probe into the matter.

The Fact-Finding Investigative Panel, which was constituted on January 30, 2023, by the university management, completed its work on June 5th, 2023, submitted a report to the University Disciplinary Committee comprising two members of the Governing Council, two members of the Senate and one external member.

The Committee between 21st June 2023 to 30th August 2023, adopted the report of the Fact Finding Investigative Panel and determined the appropriate course of action against the staff and students involved in the scandal.

The report reveals that four staff of the university were found responsible for altering or tampering with students’ grades, recommending the dismissal and banning of one of the staff from taking employment in the university for a period of 10 years, and the other three staff’s contracts be terminated.

However, the press release from the office of the registrar only named Dr. John T Mendy among the implicated staff and the action taken against him.

According to the Disciplinary Committee of the university recommendations, all altered or tampered grades should be reversed to their original state and students implicated in altering or tampering with grades who have already received their degree certificates and transcripts should have them recalled and revoked with the names of the sixty students who are also implicated in the scandal not mentioned.

Meanwhile, out of a total of 60 students, 27 females, and 33 males were implicated in the grade alteration scandal.

It reveals that ten students have already collected their attestations, but they have not yet been awarded their degree certificates, recommending that their transcripts/attestations be recalled and revoked. 

“Forty-seven (47) students will have their grades reversed to their original state. Only two students were not found guilty because the alteration of their grades was authorized,” the office said.