Blade Nzimande orders probe of ‘bogus honorary degrees’ after Shauwn Mkhize doctorate

04 December 2021 - 12:25
Shauwn Mkhize was given an honorary doctorate by an unregistered college.
Shauwn Mkhize was given an honorary doctorate by an unregistered college.
Image: VELI NHLAPO

Higher education minister Blade Nzimande says he is concerned about increasing cases of bogus institutions awarding honorary doctorates, mostly to celebrities. 

This comes after businesswoman and reality TV personality Shauwn Mkhize was given a doctorate in philosophy by the unregistered Good Shepherd College of Religion, Culture and Training. 

In October, Limpopo mayor Basani Shibambu came under fire for conferring an honorary degree on a local entertainer with dwarfism for his “positive contribution and influence in the community” during a primary school function. 

Nzimande appealed to members of the pubic to be circumspect and not accept such qualifications. He also said an investigation was under way. 

“I have already requested the Council of Higher Education (CHE) to investigate and advise on appropriate action on all the reported cases of the awarding of these bogus honorary degrees,” he said.  

Ahead of the 2022 academic year, the minister also asked prospective students to verify the legality of any programme or course offered by institutions before enrolling to avoid falling prey to illegal operations.

He asked them to consult the registers of private higher institutions and private colleges, which can be found on the department of higher education & training website.

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