Student harassment by lecturers is an epidemic that has been ignored for too long (Pulse Contributor's Opinion)

For student harassment, intimidation and victimization by lecturers in higher institutions across Nigeria to become a thing of the past, we need a public disciplinary example.

Student harassment by lecturers in Nigerian universities is an epidemic that has been ignored for too long

The culture of student harassment has thrived in Nigerian universities since the dawn of time. For unjust, ridiculous and trivial reasons, students are being harassed, intimidated, and victimized by lecturers. Instead of these lecturers utilizing their position of academic authority to guide and enlighten their students, they not only abuse their power to the highest ability, but they also frustrate students who just want to graduate and make their families proud.

“Write your name and matric number, I will fail, you and nothing will happen, Not even the VC can talk to me”. These are common statements thrown by these kinds of lectures who believe they are above the law, and sadly, in all blunt facts, they are. And that screams one of the major flaws in Nigeria’s higher education system, unaccountability. The fact that there are no real regulatory bodies established to check the excesses of lectures is the first box to clear to eliminate every single trace of this depressing pandemic.

In a quick survey, this writer took, one in ten students have been in unfair positions in a lecturer-student power play. For these students, some of their crimes were because they did not greet their lecturers while passing. For some female students, it was for refusing the romantic advances of their lecturers. Others, for simply conversing during a class. All of these norms become exaggerated by the lecturer, causing them to foolishly and childishly flaunt their god-might by verbally abusing students, unjustly failing them in tests and exams, or frustrating and delaying their clearance at the end of their program. What is worse, is that they back up their cruel decisions with years of experience in a deplored educational system. “After all, they have been teaching for over thirty years”. But what that only defines is decades of unreported, unchecked gross misconduct that has ruined the lives of countless students across Nigerian universities. Due to this continual misuse of power and no bodies to fight for students, such students are caught in the sinister webs of these pathetic lecturers and are left to wallow in embarrassment, depression, or even drop out.

In 2019, investigative journalist, Kiki Mordi, launched a campaign ‘sex for grades’. It led to a nationwide movement that began after the disciplinary action against named lecturers who were caught sexually harassing female students. Although sex for grades may still happen in some universities, that movement reduced its sporadic rate and opened a conversation that goes a long way in curbing a societal ill. The same goes for this; for student harassment, intimidation and victimization by lecturers in higher institutions across Nigeria to become a thing of the past, we need a public disciplinary example. We need a scapegoat!.

JOIN OUR PULSE COMMUNITY!

Unblock notifications in browser settings.

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or:

Email: eyewitness@pulse.ng

Recommended articles

PDP Primaries: Ortom wins senatorial ticket as serving Ondo senator loses

PDP Primaries: Ortom wins senatorial ticket as serving Ondo senator loses

If I become president, any govt official that spends dollars will be jailed -Peter Obi

If I become president, any govt official that spends dollars will be jailed -Peter Obi

Rubber producers present life crocodile to Obasanjo, say they can’t give him money

Rubber producers present life crocodile to Obasanjo, say they can’t give him money

Presidential ambition: Emefiele withdraws suit against INEC, AGF

Presidential ambition: Emefiele withdraws suit against INEC, AGF

PDP Primaries: Enugu reports peaceful and transparent elections

PDP Primaries: Enugu reports peaceful and transparent elections

PDP primaries: INEC accused of swapping delegates list in Ogun State

PDP primaries: INEC accused of swapping delegates list in Ogun State

Rep Ogbeide-Ihama picks PDP ticket for Edo South at Senate

Rep Ogbeide-Ihama picks PDP ticket for Edo South at Senate

Buhari commiserates with Kano people over gas explosion

Buhari commiserates with Kano people over gas explosion

Africa loses 300,000 women, children due to smoke from firewood — Adesina

Africa loses 300,000 women, children due to smoke from firewood — Adesina