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Opinions Mon, 1 Aug 2016

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Ghana: The accreditation challenges in transnational educational ecology

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Comment: Sponsored report

Author:
Ampong Dan
Date:
2016-08-06 22:23:11
Comment to:
The Accreditation Challenges in Transnational Educ

“Blowing out the other person’s candle does not make yours shine brighter”. This is exactly what the so-called ‘investigative report’ by Dr(?) Prosper Yao Tsikata and Dr(?) Kobla Dotse are trying to achieve with their sponsored publication.

In embarking on the ‘research’ the authors stated that they were guided by four considerations viz. to:
1. Seek truth and report it
2. Minimize harm
3. Act independently
4. Be accountable and transparent

One begins to wonder if at all they were guided by these rubrics.

Firstly, they stated that they selected institutions and individuals concerned for interrogation. This however, is false because the individuals and institutions mentioned denied being contacted by anybody as regards their accreditation or educational programmes. At least, this rebuttal by the institutions and individuals concerned gives credence to their methodology i.e. ‘purposive comparative framework’ for which the purpose is best known to them.

Secondly, apart from the email communication between the writers and the executive secretary of NAB as contained in the appendix, they relied on secondary sources of information like newspapers sponsored or owned by politicians and Facebook pages etc. One doesn’t need to be a Dr. to know how to copy and paste and then add sources, any ‘Tom, Dick and Harry’ can do what they just did. This therefore, cannot be called an investigative report. All they did was to simply copy and paste contents retrieved from various online sources (majority with questionable pedigree).

Thirdly, the report can best be described as a sponsored publication aimed at tarnishing the image of well meaning Ghanaians who through their hard work are recognized by these institutions when the local universities stick to their analog ways of doing things in a digital age. One can also perceive jealousy on the part of the writers. Distinguished Ghanaians are being recognized with an honorary doctorate for their outstanding achievements and contributions to the society while others have worked hard and earned their doctorate, the writers feel the market is becoming too competitive for them but rather than striving for excellence, they have resorted to a PhD (Pull Him Down) syndrome which sadly, is an African problem.

Finally, Drs(?) Prosper Yao Tsikata and Kobla Dotse have deliberately attempted to misinform the general public through their report because they have failed to distinguish between an unaccredited, unrecognized and fake a institution. An unaccredited institution by the government doesn’t mean that the institution is fake. It only means that the institution is not recognized by the government or it could even be that the institution is working towards getting its accreditation. For example, in the United Kingdom, a college may not be accredited but can work in partnership with accredited universities to satisfy their market needs and this doesn’t make the college fake. Similarly, there are legitimate organisations that employ people but are not on the list of Tier 2 sponsors. However, for immigration purposes these organisations need to apply and get approval to be able to sponsor migrant applicants. If the migrant applicant already has a visa, they can go ahead an employ the migrant. These are standards set to control certain excesses but is doesn’t make the other organisations who cannot meet the standards illegal. A fake institution is that which is not legally existing but operating. It is evident that the word ‘fake’ will generate the kind of attention they would expect, just like a newspaper headline, the reason the writers preferred the use of the word ‘fake’. The general public is therefore, advised to take this report seriously at their own peril because the self-acclaimed journalist Dr(?) Prosper Yao Tsikata is just trying to make a living.

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Ampong Dan on Aug 6, 22:23
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