Two university lecturers allegedly solicited money for marks

The Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) has confirmed that two lecturers from one university in Rwanda stand accused of corruption after allegedly receiving money from students in exchange for marks.

The duo, both men, were arrested separately after thorough investigations, according to the RIB. According to the statement by the RIB, Celestin Sebeza, 35, is accused of having received RWF1.3 million (about US$1,260) from 24 students who studied at the university. The other accused, Francois Bagaragaza, 47, is said to have received RWF457,250 (about US$440) from several students.

A reliable source, who preferred not to be named, said that the university in question is the University of Technology and Arts of Byumba, located in the Northern Province.

The suspects were arrested after some of the students provided information that prompted the investigations, according to the source. The source said that the suspects allegedly told the students, who missed exams and tests or underperformed in their courses, to give them money in exchange for marks.

“The dossiers of the arrested university lecturers have been passed on to the prosecution. The investigations are continuing to ascertain whether there are other people behind the alleged crimes to also bring them to book,” reads the statement from the RIB.

Soliciting and receiving bribes is a criminal offence under Rwanda’s penal code. Upon conviction, the suspects could face prison sentences of from five to seven years, and a fine of three to five times the amount he or she received or solicited.

University officials have called for concerted efforts to increase communication and awareness while strengthening measures to fight corruption in all its forms if they are to reverse the trend.

The RIB called upon anyone with information about suspected corruption to come forward so that cases can be investigated and the suspects arrested. The bureau said joint efforts are required to end suspected corruption.