Yesterday, the BBC released a documentary conducted on some West African Universities which have been rumored that lecturers engage in sexual activities with their students for better grades hence documentary titled “SEX-FOR-GRADES”
The universities involved the University of Lagos from Nigerian and University of Ghana, and so far the lecturers from the University of Ghana have denied any wrongdoing.
One of the lecturers caught in the documentary has described BBC’s documentary as being biased and one-sided because they were statement he made to the undercover journalist which was not captured in the video.
Well, Ghanaian investigative journalist Manasseh Azure Awuni has added his opinion concerning BBC’s documentary.
According to him, this documentary is very difficult to either accept or reject because it was not tested in the first place.
Manasseh wrote on his Facebook timeline that;
The “Sex for Grades” hypothesis
When going undercover to bust someone allegedly involved in an illegal or immoral act, you secretly record the incident, unobtrusively, as it takes place between the culprit and third parties. Where, that is impossible, you may have a sting operation. In that case, you pose, for instance, as the prey, meet the predator and record proceedings. In that case, you don’t change the identity of the character you are playing or the subject of your investigation when you meet the alleged predator.
Investigative journalism is like academic research. If you have randomly or purposively (as in Prof. Gyampo’s case) sampled a university lecturer who allegedly offers undeserved grades to his sexually harassed students, then you can only use one approach to test your hypothesis: let your engagement focus on the subject of the investigation. Go to the lecturer and tell him you are one of his over one thousand students and you have failed his subject or you are not sure of passing his subject. If he asks for sex in order to give you the grade, you have your story.
You can easily get a fake ID card and index number that shows you a student taking his course. When you are going to bust a lecturer offering grades in return for sex, you don’t go to him or her as someone seeking mentorship or to seek national service placement without mentioning the subject of grades.
In the case of Prof. Gyampo, as shown in the video, the lecturer made advances at a student who wanted to be mentored. In the process, he told her to be free to accept or reject the proposal. She did not give in. He requested a hug after buying her shoes. She declined. And they parted ways.
I’m not justifying the conduct of Prof. Gyampo in the video. But the BBC’s investigative hypothesis, “Sex for Grades”, cannot be accepted or rejected because it was not tested in the first place.