The Chief Executive Officer of the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP), John Apontuah Kumah has reportedly forked out some US$ 12,000 to a con university to confer on him an honorary professorship title.
His loyalists were all over social media this week congratulating him for his achievement as a young professor conferred on him by the Academic Union (AU) Oxford, UK, an organisation posing to have links with the Oxford University in the UK.
Some of his friends warned him that that title was fraudulent and that he should be cautious because the institution conferring on him the new title was not a credible academic institution.
But John Kumah would fire back at his critics, saying: “this what you know so far but kindly open your mind to new dimensions of life. I’m not an academic nor will lecturer but I will be Professor, much thanks.”
Whatsup News has been finding out that (AU) is a part of the European Business Assembly, which is a fake institution owned by Ukrainian businessmen Anton Savvov and his son Ivan Savvon, who have been widely accused of exploiting the reputation of the University of Oxford to sell millions of pounds worth of ‘fake’ honours.
The European Business Assembly advertises opportunities to get ‘boosts’ and ‘recognition from Oxford’ on its website, where it invites people to apply for non-affiliated awards that can cost up to £9,300.
It also uses images of Oxford colleges in its adverts and uses a similar typeface to the university’s in its logo and claims to offer access to ‘exclusive Oxford University lectures’.
In 2017, the Times Newspaper of UK published how the prestigious Oxford University was roped into a fake award scheme by the Ukrainian businessmen.
According to the Mail of UK, in a 2017 report, former members of staff claimed they were told to mass email foreign businesses and approach firms in developing countries telling them they had been nominated for awards, and informing anyone who responded positively they would have to pay ‘thousands of pounds’ for admin fees and a licence to use the award for ‘public relations and marketing purposes’.
Pictures of previous awards ceremonies show they are full of pomp and pageantry, featuring trumpeters, bagpipers and a procession led by a flag-waving man wearing a historic military uniform.
The EBA also hosts conferences with titles including ‘Summit of Leaders’ and has its own crest and dress robes for attendees.
Previous recipients of awards include European MEP Fernando Ruas, a former mayor in Portugal, who is reported to have used public funds to buy a ‘Best City’ award.
Mr Ruas told the Times he ‘paid a registration fee’ but said the EBA was ‘credible’.
Oxford University has confirmed it has no affiliation to the EBA and would not comment further.
It is unclear if any punitive measure was meted out to the EBA organisation since these reports became public in 2017. But it appears they have resurfaced again, with John Kumah being their newest “catch”.