“Grace Mugabe Was A Ghost Student”- Former UZ Senior Lecturer Tells Court
When it rains, it pours and it seems to be pouring for suspended University of Zimbabwe Vice Chancellor Levi Nyagura and the former first lady Grace Ntombizodwa Mugabe as more witnesses claim that the controversial degree is fake.
Doctor Watch Ruparanganda who was chairman of the Department of Sociology and senior lecturer during that period made some stunning claims when he appeared in court. He told the court that Grace Mugabe was a ghost student and appeared from nowhere.
Dr. Ruparanganda who is a third witness in the trial of suspended University of Zimbabwe Vice Chancellor Levi Nyagura said some of his duties when he was a senior lecturer at UZ was to ensure that the enrolment of the students was in accordance with the regulations but he claimed whilst he was working there, he never came across Grace. He said he doesn’t know Grace and he believes she doesn’t know him either.
“I don’t even know Grace Mugabe and even if she was here she wouldn’t have known me, she just appeared from nowhere, and it was through the grapevine that I heard that she was graduating with a PHD degree,” he said.
Dr. Ruparangada further stated that Mugabe was a ghost student as the board did not have any knowledge of her and the topic she was researching. They only came to know about her when she was about to graduate.
He said as the board, they were supposed to have known her qualifications to avoid enrolling standard six students.
“Mugabe was supposed to have seen me as the chairman like what other candidates like Thokozani Khupe did,” he added.
According to The Herald, Dr. Ruparangada told the court that, Professor Nyagura knew very well that for one to supervise a PHD candidate, he or she had to have the qualifications but instead he chose to select an unqualified friend of his to supervise the ghost student.
The former Vice-Chancellor is facing criminal abuse of office charges. The charges stem from the degree that was awarded to the former first lady Grace Mugabe by the UZ’s Faculty of Social Studies Department of Sociology in 2014.
The degree attracted intense criticism and speculation after claims that Grace did not defend her thesis, let alone write one, and that she did not take the required period of time to complete the doctorate.
His trial kicked off on Thursday last week.
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