Fake diplomas threaten Iraqi Kurdistan's
July 28, 2012
ERBIL-Hewlêr, Kurdistan region 'Iraq', — The
Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research
has announced that it doubts the authenticity of 500
high school diplomas.
Dr. Jamal Kamal, the director of private school
affairs at the ministry, said these diplomas have
been used to admit students into private
universities and colleges. He said the diplomas were
sent to Baghdad for verification and that “40 of
them turned out to be fake.”
Dr. Kamal said that only two of the diplomas were
made in Kurdistan. The rest come from other cities
in Iraq, but their exact source remains unknown.
“Upon discovering the diplomas were not authentic,
their owners were expelled from their respective
universities,” he said.
The fake diplomas were found in Nawroz, Hayat, Cihan
and Human Development universities. The individuals
holding the fraudulent diplomas were students in
first and third year. Currently, 12 private
universities are licensed by the Kurdistan Regional
Government (KRG), where 11,000 students study.
Dr. Joe Assaf, provost of the Lebanese French
University, regards the increase of the fake
diplomas in universities as a major risk.
“Fraudulent diplomas are more dangerous than expired
medication and food items. Those who make or use
them must be punished,” he said.
Dr. Kamal added that it has gotten to the point that
all diplomas from outside Kurdistan are doubted. He
said, “The ministry has decided to investigate the
authenticity of all diplomas issued in Iraqi cities
[outside the Kurdistan Region] before they are
approved for admission in private universities.”
Dr. Amjad Dalo, president of the Cihan University,
blames the Ministry of Education for the fake
diplomas. “The fake diplomas have affected the
reputation of the universities. We have filed
complaints against the owners in court, besides
expelling them from the university,” he added.
However, Bapir Bakir, the general director of the
says that the Ministry of Education is not
responsible for diplomas issued outside of
Kurdistan. “Any government office or ministry can
ask us to verify diplomas. We contact Baghdad’s
Ministry of Education to verify them,” he said.
Dr. Saad Surchi, vice president of Hayat University,
has found a number of fraudulent diplomas. He said
the diplomas were from Baghdad and Mosul and added
that the students had been expelled and would not be
able to study in any university.
Dr. Surchi believes more fake diplomas will be
discovered. “A number of students have not yet
brought forward their diplomas. We think some of
them might be fake,” he said.
By Shwan Barzinji
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