From Idowu Abdullahi, Lagos
There were uproar from Nigerians yesterday as sex-for-grades scandal rocked the University of Lagos, Akoka, following a BBC documentary which exposed two of the institution’s lecturers.
The lecturers were: Dr. Samuel Oladipo and Dr. Boniface Igbenegbu. They were exposed in a 52-minutes long documentary which featured four lecturers from two of West Africa’s leading universities – UNILAG and the University of Ghana by BBC Africa Eye team led by Kiki Mordi, who had been a victim of sexual harassment which led to her quitting of her undergraduate studies
The documentary exposed the atrocities committed by lecturers and how female students – those struggling with studies, seeking admission or in search of mentors are being exploited and sexually harassed.
Following dozens of testimonies, BBC Africa Eye sent undercover journalists to the University of Lagos and the University of Ghana, posing as students.
According to the reports, the female reporters were sexually harassed by senior lecturers at the institutions.
Unknown to the lecturers, the female reporters were wearing secret cameras during the encounters.
Dr. Boniface is also the head pastor of a Foursquare Gospel Church in Lagos.
The undercover journalist sent to the institution posed as a 17-year-old student who wanted an admission at the University of Lagos.
In his bid to secure admission for her, Igbeneghu, invited the teenager to his office for tutorials, which later resulted into inappropriate conversations with her and some advances.
In the documentary, the lecturer revealed how his colleagues tossed and passed around UNILAG female students for sex.
He also revealed how his colleagues patronised UNILAG Staff club ‘Cold room’ to perpetuate their atrocities on female students.
“Do you know that you are a very beautiful girl,” he asked her.
“Do you know that I am a pastor and I’m in my fifties. What will shock you is that even at my age now, if I want a girl of your age – a 17-year-old, all I need is to sweet tongue her and put some money in her hand and I’ll get her,” Igbeneghu said to her on camera.
Meanwhile, the Foursquare Gospel Church has suspended Dr Boniface Igbeneghu. This is coming as the institution also vowed to conduct thorough investigation into allegations of sex for grades leveled against the lecturer.
The Church also asked Dr Boniface to step down from all ministerial assignments for appropriate actions to be taken.
In a statement on Monday by the National Secretary of the church, Ikechukwu Ugbaja, said: “The attention of the leadership of the Foursquare Gospel Church in Nigeria has been drawn to a video clip trending on social media platforms titled, ‘Sex for grades: Undercover in West Africa Universities – BBC News’ wherein a lecturer at the University of Lagos named Boniface Igbeneghu, also described as a pastor in Foursquare Gospel Church, was allegedly involved in sexual misconduct with some female students of the university.
“The general public is hereby informed that as holiness and Bible-believing church, we do not condone such heinous and unscriptural acts among our ministers. We totally dissociate ourselves from the purported conduct of Dr Igbeneghu and promise to take appropriate measures as soon as the ongoing investigation is concluded.
“Meanwhile, the pastor in question has been asked to step down from all ministerial assignments.”