Nigerian Graduate Gives Real Reasons He Burnt Certificates

Edo State-born Alvin Ilenre, the Ajayi Crowther University graduate who recently burnt the originals of his educational certificates has opened up on the reason why he took the extreme move.

In an interview with Sunday Punch he said that for 13 years the certificates had proved useless to him noting how he was asked to bring N2.5m for a job opportunity that came his way.

Asked if he really burnt his certificates, Alvin Ilenre said:

“I didn’t know where I dropped my secondary school certificate amid all these, but the certificates I burnt were my university, primary school leaving, and National Youth Service Corps certificates. Also, there were certificates I didn’t burn. I need to state that I’m a minister of God, a trained minister even though I won’t mention my ministry. I didn’t burn the certificates from the ministry, because I was impacted by the grace of God over there so, I never burnt those. But I burnt the educational certificates that are useless in the country.

On the reason why he burnt his certificates, Alvin Ilenre, said:


“The reason why I burnt the certificates is not far-fetched from the kind of societ we are in and a lot of people in the country can relate to these things that we’re talking about here. It is frustrating being in a country where your certificate is not regarded. We’re in a country where a certificate has been bastardised. You know, we behave like we don’t know what’s happening whereas the country is decaying. I have a lot of points but I’ll mention a few.

“First of all, I graduated from school and I wanted to get a job, but someone was telling me to go and bring N2.5m. Where will I get that from? Where should I get it from? Where will I get N2.5m to get a job? If I had that money with me wouldn’t I start a business, or maybe go outside the country, to one African country where electricity is steady, and start a business? You can’t start a business in this country and your millions will not go down the drain.


Continuing on the reasons he burnt his certificates, Alvin Ilenre, added:

“Two, I’ve had issues with people, friends, especially female friends, who told me that they were offered jobs on the condition that they would have sexual relationships with the employers or whoever wanted to make it happen. Jobs are not got with credibility, credence, and authenticity again. It is now who can sleep their way to employment. These are things that are happening.

Asked if he was not bothered that he may need the burnt certificates one day, Alvin Ilenre said:

“At least, I went to school and it was only my certificates that I burnt. If I approach an employer for a job and they doubt my qualifications, they can go to the university. The university will prove that I graduated from the school. At least, I am better than some persons whose studentships cannot be authenticated by the universities they claim to have attended. So, those are the things we’re talking about. It is sickening; I’m a person who likes doing things the right way, but when you want to do things the right way in this country, you are seen as a fool and are neglected. These are decays in society that we’re not talking about. Military jobs are by slots; then, what are we talking about?”

“Private businesses are running out of the country. Even when you want to do business, you’re not even sure because there is no light, no road, no basic infrastructure. So that’s the thing. And I’m not the only one on this table, we have a lot of young people on this table who can attest to what I’m talking about. So, that’s part of the reason. I will tell you my mind; let’s shake all the tables and speak truth to power. How many of them (politicians) in power truly have (academic) results? You’ll go to school for years in Nigeria – five years, six years, without graduation. However, their children are taken abroad for studies. When they go abroad and finish in time at the same age when you’re still languishing in school, they’ll get jobs in the civil service and get level 12. When you finally graduate after many years, you’ll now struggle to get a government job and when you do, what you’d get is level eight. Let’s look at our educational system and talk to ourselves.”

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