SexForGrades The BBC report is part of a year-long investigation into sexual harassment by professors at the University of Lagos and the University of Ghana.
The University of Lagos which says it has a zero-tolerance policy toward sexual harassment has suspended Dr. Boniface Igbeneghu following the allegation against him.
A statement signed by Principal Assistant Registrar (Communication Unit), Mrs. Taiwo Oloyede said the university “dissociates itself totally from this act(s) and any inappropriate behaviour of staff with female students and vice versa.”
“As a reputable Institution and one of the foremost Universities in Nigeria and sub-Sahara Africa, we are highly embarrassed by these allegations and we will do all that is necessary to ensure that this menace is checked in our institution. “The University of Lagos is committed to providing a conducive and safe learning environment where future leaders are trained to take responsibilities for their action,” the statement said.
Why has he been suspended?
The academic was filmed putting inappropriate questions and requests toward a BBC journalist, who was posing as a prospective student aged 17.
On a final meeting between the pair, the lecturer was filmed physically harassing her and asking to kiss her inside of his locked office. He also appeared to threaten to tell her mother if he was “disobedient” towards him.
A number of other students in the film also made allegations of abuse against the lecturer. One former student of Dr. Igbeneghu, whose identity was protected, claimed the experience has led her to attempt suicide several times.
The Foursquare Church, where Dr. Igbeneghu is a pastor, have also distanced themselves from him in a statement. They said the church does not condone “heinous and unscriptural” acts from ministers and asked him to step down.
What else did the film show?
The full hour-long documentary also featured interactions with two lecturers at the University of Ghana. Both of the men, Professor Ransford Gyampo and Dr. Paul Kwame Butakor, have denied they were offering “sex for grades” in the undercover exchanges.
Prof Gyampo has also suggested to local media that he plans to take legal action against the BBC. The University of Ghana says it will investigate those named in the report and also categorically denied protecting any staff or students who have engaged in sexual harassment.
Journalist Kiki Mordi, who led the documentary, opened up about her own experience of university harassment which led her to drop out and abandon career ambitions to work in medicine.
The BBC expose has provoked a large response on social media in the two countries. Many Twitter users condemned the actions on film and called for a swift response, while others shared their own alleged experiences.