TERTIARY INSTITUTION (FOREIGN) – MAURITIAN NATIONAL –
PROFESSIONAL CERTIFICATE (06/11/07)
(No. B/1020) Mrs L. D. Dookun-Luchoomun (Third Member for La Caverne and Phoenix) asked the Prime Minister, Minister of Defence & Home Affairs, Minister of Civil Service & Administrative Reforms and Minister of Rodrigues & Outer Islands whether, he will, for the benefit of the House, obtain from the Commissioner of Police, information as to whether a case has recently been reported of a Mauritian national who has been awarded a professional certificate by a foreign tertiary institution for a course which he never attended, as per the requirements and if so, if an inquiry has been carried out thereinto and the outcome thereof.
The Prime Minister: Mr Speaker, Sir, I am informed by the Commissioner of Police that no case has been reported to the Police recently to the effect that a Mauritian national has been awarded a professional certificate by a foreign tertiary institution for a course which he never attended. It all depends what the hon. Member means by “recently”, because I am told that on 25 July of this year, following information received to the effect that forged documents were being used by certain persons, the Major Crime Investigation Team, supported by the SSU personnel, raided the residences of six persons in virtue of search warrants.
At these places, several incriminating articles and documents were secured and
confirmation for authenticity has been sought from the foreign institution concerned and that is still being awaited.
Two persons are being detained in connection with this case.
Mrs Dookun-Luchoomun: Mr Speaker, Sir, may I ask the hon. Prime Minister to seek information from the Commissioner of Police, as my information is that, there are Medical Practitioners who have asked for registration as specialists, who have been presenting false documents, stating that they have followed courses, and this, being not the case, the situation has been reported to the Police?
The Prime Minister: In fact, that is what I said. There is a list of 44 items that have been taken from these raids and this is what the Police is being looked into, including whatever has been falsified will be looked into.
(PQ No. B/1021) – see “Written Answers to Questions”
UNIVERSITIES (LOCAL) - ENGINEERING PROGRAMMES – ACCREDITATION (28/03/17)
(No. B/30) Mr B. Jahangeer (Third Member for Rivière des Anguilles & Souillac) asked the Minister of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research whether, in regard to the engineers graduating from the local universities, she will state the benchmarking system that exist therefor, if any.
Mrs Dookun-Luchoomun: Madam Speaker, I wish to inform the House that all Engineering degree programmes dispensed by the local universities be it the academic requirements of the Council of Registered Professional Engineers of Mauritius.
With regard to the University of Mauritius, the Engineering programmes are set by external examiners having extensive experience of teaching, research and consultancy in their disciplines. They generally come from UK, France, Germany, South Africa and Australia among others.
Engineering programmes at the University of Mauritius have been formulated to meet the requirements of the Engineering Council of South Africa, one of the signatories of the Washington Accord for accredited B. Engineering Programs.
The process of accreditation is still underway.
I am also informed that the Institution of Engineers, Mauritius has since February 2017 taken steps to make Mauritius an eventual signatory of the Washington Accord which is a constituent forum of global initiative called the International Engineering Alliance. We understand that this alliance has set accreditation standards for engineering at the professional level through the Washington Accord.
I also understand that the Washington Accord Member undertakes to recognise the accredited programmes of other Washington Accord Members as equivalent to its own and this can be only be beneficial for our local universities offering the engineering programmes.
With regard to the accreditation process for private institutions offering engineering programmes, I have been informed by the Tertiary Education Commission that an accreditation panel is appointed for the purpose of examining any programme. Usually, the professional courses are accredited by the professional bodies and, in practice, such accreditation is known jointly by the Tertiary Education Commission and the Professional Organisation. Thus, programmes in engineering must be accredited by TEC with the assistance of the body like the Council of Registered Professional Engineers Mauritius.
The Tertiary Education Commission accredits programmes which are recognised by professional Councils in their respective countries of origin.
Mr Jahangeer: In view of a low practical ability of the fresh engineers, will the hon. Minister consider establishing MoUs with engineering multinational like ABB, Siemens to enhance the transfer of technology.
Mrs Dookun-Luchoomun: Madam Speaker, I consider that the University may be advised to do so, but they already have certain linkages with certain international bodies. As I have just mentioned in my answer, we are in the process of becoming a Signatory of the Washington Accord.
Mr Osman Mahomed: In a recent past, it was an issue about the number of years of the course of engineering degrees in Mauritius. The Council of Registered Professional Engineers need it to be four years for statuswise. Has this been sorted out or is it still an issue?
Mrs Dookun-Luchoomun: This has been sorted out.