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Investigation: ABU Lecturer/NIALS D-G, Mohammed Ladan, Caught in Plagiarism Scandal

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•I am not perfect, replies Ladan

Godsgift Onyedinefu

Despite different levels of decay in the Nigerian academic system, investigation reveals that respected public officials set the path for more rot in the nation’s tertiary education circle with latest being Mr. Muhammed Ladan, a Professor of Law, who was caught in a plagiarism scandal allegations.

Ladan teaches law with specialization in comparative jurisprudence, human rights, humanitarian, environmental, security and development laws at the Department of Public Law of the Faculty of Law, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Kaduna State, Nigeria.

Findings by Global Sentinel revealed that the Professor has authored about 30 journal articles, over 40 conference/seminar papers and 12 authored and edited books, but a significant chunk of his publications reveal gross plagiarism and copyright infringements.

President Muhammadu Buhari appointed him to head Nigerian Institute for Advance Legal Studies (NIALS), which is a critical stake holder in the justice Sector and is in fact, the apex institution for research and advance studies in law.

Ladan who is expected to be a role model and lead a good example in correcting the many ills in the Nigerian education sector, is now alleged not only to have authored publications that are not original to him, but might have likely committed an offence punishable by law.

According to the Copyright Act, any person who without the licence, authorisation or attribution of the owner of any literary, musical or artistic work in which copyright subsists, distributes, in public for commercial purposes , shall be guilty of an offence, and shall be liable upon conviction to a fine and/or imprisonment.

An instance of this offence; the university professor alleged to has infringed, is the copyright of Mrs. Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, author of ‘Law, Reproductive Health and Human Rights’ in 2006, when he reproduced the bulk of her work and made it his own publication in ‘Law and Policy on Health, HIV-AIDS, Maternal Mortality and Reproductive Rights in Nigeria’ which was published in 2007, without authorisation, which was in violation of the copyright Act of 1990. Even the law stipulates that any literary, musical or artistic work can only be reproduced after at least 50 years of the author’s demise.

Also, pages 8 and 9 of his discussion paper, “The Future of Legal Education in Nigeria” presented at the 2915 annual general conference of the Nigerian Bar Association reveals evidence of copyright infringement.

What is more worrisome is that Ladan, being a lecturer in a prestigious institution and if held accountable for committing such offence, will only give momentum to this academic rot among students and academia along with its devastating ripple effects as it is there is already a steady rise of plagiarism in schools.

What is often overlooked is that the consequences of plagiarism extend far beyond the individual who has been found guilty but can also be felt by the academic circle and even the economy. There are already concerns over the quality of graduates churned out of higher institutions yearly as even professors who are supposed to be bastion of knowledge seem to lack originality.

Key consequence of plagiarism is that it invariably leads to a skills shortage in private sector organisations, which recruit university graduates who have not gained the critical thinking skills needed to succeed in the modern economy, experts say.

A source who spoke to Global Sentinel expressed concern that if left unchecked, the coming generation may do worse and “our system may continue to bear the brunt. It is also to ensure that those within the academic circles and even beyond sit up and ensure originality in their academic work.”

He noted that the Nigerian Institute for Advance Legal Studies is the apex institution for research and advance studies in law, and thus too sensitive in “our national lives to allow persons who plagiarises or carry out copyright infringement to occupy.”

Meanwhile, a call was placed to Ladan, but he declined to respond to the allegations

“I am not perfect, but I am doing my best in my life. I can’t stop anybody from accusing me”, he said before he hung up the call.

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18 thoughts on “Investigation: ABU Lecturer/NIALS D-G, Mohammed Ladan, Caught in Plagiarism Scandal

  1. Though I have little knowledge of law, an allegation leveled against this personality has been committed since 2007 and it didn’t appear until when given this golden opportunity. It’s unfortunate that jealousy that shouldn’t be our cardinal principle is now hunting academia all in the name of safeguarding the system. Unfortunate!

    1. I strongly agree with u..the world of academia is ladden with such decay (plagiarism) only to be left on checked or rather blindly passed. However when the culprit achieve a height in their carrier the hunt begins!!.. Then a game of catch me if u can starts. 2007 is indeed a not too while ago and personally I give credit to the improving system. I look forward to a time when our system (Educational) will trash out such rot immediately than be left on addressed only for her to ridicule herself after years past. #research is fuel humans live on. A used fuel really has no value but to be replaced with new knowledge (fuel). Prof Ladden, surely meant well but breached a process and should be appreciated not condemned for such act that has been the skeleton of the system for years unknown.

      1. Prof. Ladan should be appreciated? For what exactly? It’s people like you that perpetuate the rot. Rather than face the issue you’ve descended into the realm of sentiments. Why can’t he go to prison for his deeds or misdeeds? What makes him untouchable? Smh!

    2. What I think is most important is to find out if the allegations are true or false. There may be jealousy, but a crime is a crime whether committed today, yesterday or 100 years ago.

  2. Prof Ladan is one of the shining stars of the National Association of Law Teachers and poses as an intellectual gate keeper in many NALT Conferences where I met him. He would not tolerate plagiarism even if it is a century. Heading the summit of legal research in Nigeria let no one seek to ‘defend’ him on sentiment. I don’t think he will subscribe to that. Let’s hear his side before judging.

    1. I agree with you. Ladan as Chairman of Session didn’t spare me at the 2008 NALT Conference hosted by ABSU where I delivered a paper. His criticisms helped me to make the final copy better. He is an intellectual giant. He is my friend whom i respect a lot.This accusation, if proved true, would be a serious dent.

  3. It is wrong to tag this witch hunt if it is true, Prof. Ladan is a respected scholar and i am very sure, he will not succum to the defence of witch hunting beside, assuming the allegation is true, the period of time is immaterial as same is not statute barred. I think this is a golden opportunity for Prof. to set rhe records straight by shedding light on this serious issue and lay same to rest. Prof. Ezeilo is equally an internationally recognised Prof. and i don’t think anyone will want to use her name for cheap blackmail.
    Even if they do not speak,three persons know the truth, God and the two of them!

  4. See how bootlickers and sycophants are falling over themselves in defence of a wannabe that has been pulling wool over their faces for years!! This is alaw graduate that could not summon the courage to attend the Nigerian Law School but he’s always the star boy of the North when it comes to legal education! Here is someone who presides over who and who becomes SAN in the academic field but never for once submitted his own works for SANship assessment. We know how the game of patronage runs in Nigeria. Continue in that rot. You’ll eventually find out more about the cesspit you are all in!!!🙄😏

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