ABU Denies Threat to Withdraw Kashifu’s Certificate Over UTAS Saga
The Management of Ahmadu Bello University, ABU Zaria, has refuted a claim that it threatened to withdraw the degree certificate of the Director-General of National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa, over comments on the integrity tests for UTAS, a platform developed by Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.
In a statement by the university’s spokesperson, Auwalu Umar, the university said Mr Kashifu never attended ABU for any academic program.
Kashifu Inuwa holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in Computer Science from Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Bauchi State, (ATBU) and is a recipient of multiple executive certifications in leadership, innovation, telecommunications, service management, networking and solutions design. Some of certification were obtained from top-notch universities, including Harvard University, University of Cambridge and Oxford University. He is also an MIT-Sloan strategist trained at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Meanwhile in clearing the misconception, the statement from ABU spokesperson reads: “The attention of Management of Ahmadu Bello University has been drawn to a media report alleging that the institution had in March 2022 threatened to withdraw the Bachelor degree of Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, the Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), over comments on the integrity tests for UTAS, a payment platform developed by Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
“Accordingly, the University Management wishes to state categorically that at no time did ABU issue such a threat. After all, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, from records available, never attended Ahmadu Bello University for any academic programme, be it undergraduate, graduate or sub-degree.
It would be recalled that a group of people claiming to speak on behalf of ATBU Management had threatened to withdraw the Kashifu’s degree certificate.
It was later discovered that the threat was actually issued by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), ATBU Branch and signed by one Ibrahim Inuwa and Muhammad Muhammad over UTAS platform.
In their statement, ASUU members threatened that unless the DG NITDA retracted his comments on the UTAS they would be forced to initiate the process of withdrawing his degree certificate as an alumnus of the university.
They said they were embarrassed that after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on March 9th, 2022, Kashifu had implied that the UTAS had failed integrity test, vulnerability test (security integrity), User Acceptance Test (UAT) and stress load test, as well as the hardware requirements.
While the management of ATBU distanced itself from the threat, other groups lambasted ASUU for overstepping it boundary.
Speaking on the issue the spokesperson of the Network of Advocates for Digital Reporting (NADIR), Bello Shehu had described the ASUU’s move as “laughable and ill-advised”, wondering why the official was being targeted “for discharging his duties”
“In a desperate bid to blackmail a public official into lowering the bars of his mandate and succumbing to selfish inclinations, ASUU have resorted to threats.
“Has the union now usurped the mandate of University Senate in awarding degree certificates?
“Is there a legally recognised marriage of convenience between labour unionism and award of degree certificates in ATBU?
“Isn’t ASUU overstepping its boundaries and arrogating to itself an authority outside its jurisdiction?” NADIR spokesperson concluded.