Inside Alkaleri Health College Dashing Hope of Graduates For Issuing “Unaccredited Certificates”

Umar Mohammed enrolled in the College of Health Technology Alkaleri in 2016 to study Pharmacy. Two years down the drain, he graduated and was awarded a Diploma in Pharmacy Technician. Unknown to Umar, the course he spent two years studying was not accredited by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria.

His agonies started when he submitted his credentials at the Bauchi State Ministry of Health after completing a volunteer work program for possible employment, only to be told that his course isn’t accredited, hence he does not have the commensurate qualifications to be hired as a substantive worker despite spending months as a volunteer health worker in the state.

“I am completely demoralised and cannot continue with the volunteer work I have been doing for quite a very long time.”

Umar shares the agonies with his six other colleagues who spoke to our correspondent.

In a separate interview with WikkiTimes, Umar’s colleagues; Ukasha Mohammed, Abubakar Yusuf and Eleazal H. Nababa could not hide their frustration.

The graduates, who looked visibly angry as they narrate their ordeal, said they were told to go back to their former school to seek clarification on their certificates, as it is not recognized by the statutory body in charge of the course they claimed to have studied.

“As I am talking to you now, I have been demoralized completely in such a way that I cannot even go back to do the volunteer work again. I can’t stand before any patient to say I want to give medical assistance because I now consider myself as unqualified to do so,” one of the affected graduates from Warji local government area of Bauchi state, Kamaluddeen S. Abubakar told WikkiTimes.

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Abubakar said the school lured them into believing that “it has an affiliation with one, Jama’atu college of Health Zaria in Kaduna State”, only for them to find out that it was not the case after graduation.

He said he, alongside his colleagues, were assured by the government that due to their commitment and dedication to the volunteer service they offered for months, they would be considered for employment once the opportunity avails itself.

“True to government’s assurance, we were yesterday (Monday) called to come for a job interview by the state ministry of health at the office of the Director Pharmacy. I am a Pharmacy technician, but to our surprise, after going through our credentials, we were told that the certificates we obtained from the college of health technology Alkaleri is not recognized by the Board of Pharmacy Council of Nigeria”, Abubakar said.

He said that the Director at the State Ministry of health who advised them to go back to the school where they graduated emphatically told them that will not employed with the certificates they presented.

What infuriated the graduates the most was how they were badly treated by the proprietor of the school when they visited to complain about the school.

“So, together with my colleagues, we went to the school to meet the proprietor, on meeting him, he didn’t show any concern to our plights, he was not remorseful at all, he asked us to go and take any action we feel like taking”.

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“We are frustrated, that’s why we decided to talk to the press so that the whole world will know what we are passing through, we are not sure whether this problem has to do with us alone, there are other graduates from different courses”, Abubakar further noted.

He said they were not aware that the college is not listed among the recognized colleges of health technology until they presented their certificates at the the state ministry of health.

“We were told at the initial stage that the college is an accredited one but now the story has dramatically changed, we have had our resources, our time and everything wasted, that’s is why we felt we should be compensated”, Abubakar grudgingly said.

He said he has spent an unquantifiable amount of money including his time but everything has turned upside down now.

“We are villagers, we sold our farmlands, grains, and other belongings in order to acquire knowledge and get its benefit, but this has ended our dreams today, I don’t know where to start”, Abubakar added.

He pleaded with relevant authorities to come to their aid, as according to him, there are many students still undergoing studies in various courses in the institution, a plea Ukasha, his colleague emboldened.

“We have invested huge but scarce resources and time for three years to acquire this certificate, but unfortunately, as innocent as we were, we were told yesterday that our certificates cannot be accepted, that it has not been recognized by the relevant body”, he said.

“Government has decided to help us after working as volunteers health workers, but when we presented our certificates during screening, the certificates were rejected by the government”, Ukasha said.

“The officials told us that the certificates we were confidently brandishing are not recognized by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria”, he said.

“One of the government officials was asking, which school is this?, and we answered, it is the college of health technology Alkaleri. But when they all checked, it was found to be unrecognized. He called someone in Abuja and was told that the institution is not accredited by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria, that they are on their own”, Mohammed added.

Mohammed who took a deep breath before uttering another word, lamented that they have gone back to square one in life, adding; “Even to get admission now is not easy, and school is now expensive, where are we going to start from?

“We have now realized that our course is not an accredited one but we don’t know about others, we didn’t know our own until now.

We have courses such as X-ray technicians, Lab Technicians, Health Record Technicians, Environmental Technicians, Chew among others, apart from our own Pharmacy Technicians”, he explained.

For 23-year-old Abbas Saleh who hails from Warji LGA, they were rattled when they heard about the bad news that they will not be considered for the job they were hopeful of getting.

“Honestly speaking, we were rattled by this issue, it is too painful to say that someone who spent three years, collected his certificate, embarked on volunteer work and when the time came for him to start reaping the fruit of his labour only to be told that the opportunity is slipping away on the ground that his a certificate is not recognized”, he decried.

He said it was a clear indication that the result of their studies in that college is now useless, describing it as “good for nothing because it cannot give one a job or admission to further one’s studies.”

“So, one has to start afresh. To me, it’s as good as one has not gone to school”, he said.

According to Saleh, “we are the pioneers of the school, I think the institution is getting to about five years now since it was established, I started in 2017 and graduated in 2018/2019”.

Only Two Colleges are allowed to Run Pharmacy in Bauchi—Pharmacists’ Council of Nigeria

The Pharmacists’ Council of Nigeria Bauchi State branch says only College of Health Technology Ningi and Garu Islamic College of Health Technology Bauchi were allowed to offer courses in pharmacy.

The State officer of the Council in Bauchi, Pharmacist Bakwa Nenlep said the council usually give two accreditation for two colleges in each State; “Except for cities like Lagos and Kaduna where you have a lot of Army formations where they recruit a lot of army medical officers where there is a need for them to go and retrain, so we give such places more than that number.”

He said in the case of Bauchi State, any college of health technology offering courses in pharmacy technician apart from the two colleges were doing so illegally.

“So, for Bauchi state, we have given only two institutions the accreditation to run pharmacy technician, number one, college of health tech Ningi, number two, Garu Islamic College of Health Technology in GRA which is situated close to Albarka Radio. “So, those are the only two institutions that we know.”  He said there are schools in the state that have applied to the council, but “that of Alkaleri have never applied to us.”

“Malikiya College of Health Technology has applied, another school, Dr. Suleiman School of hygiene have applied, and another school in Azare has applied, but we have never received an application from that particular school”, he said.

He said the council had received rumours that the college was running the course illegally, but “We are doing our own underground investigation with the security agencies.”

“They said that they are affiliated to one school in Zaria, I called my state officer in Zaria and she said that particular school in Zaria is also not accredited”, Nenlep insisted.

Repeated efforts to get the proprietor of the school, Samaila Talba speak on the matter proves abortive, as he insisted that our correspondent should speak with the legal adviser of the school.  

The legal Adviser of the College, Barrister Dahiru Abdulhamid told WikkiTimes on the telephone that the course in question has been accredited.

“The institution in Alkaleri is affiliated to Jama’atu College of health technology Zaria. The management of the college in Zaria was the one responsible for securing accreditation for all the courses. They are the ones that issue certificates”, a claim Nenlep denied earlier.

When WikkiTimes queried why their certificate was rejected by the ministry, Barrister Abdulhamid said “it may not be unconnected with the fact that the people in the ministry do not know much about the presence of the college in the state.”

“I think that must be the reason why they doubted the authenticity of their certificates but, in reality, it is authentic, it is recognized”, he insisted.

The legal adviser added that; “I think what the proprietor need is to meet with the statutory bodies and other relevant authorities to make them understand that the program is recognized, all the certificates are sent to him from there.”


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