PUTRAJAYA: The Higher Education Ministry views the misuse of academic titles and credentials very seriously and is currently looking into the issue.
Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh (pic) said his ministry has been in talks with higher education institutions on how to stop this recurring problem.
"We are looking into this and have been getting feedback on the best way to proceed," he told reporters after the National Professors Council presentation of credentials ceremony here Friday.
The issue arose after Universiti Malaya issued a statement last month that said it never conferred any doctorate in entrepreneurship to motivational speaker Azizan Osman.
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Infrastructure University Kuala Lumpur have also denied conferring any doctorate to Azizan, a well-known motivational speaker who is also the founder of the Richworks group of companies.
Idris said Azizan's case was not new.
"It's a common problem, and there have been warnings issued in the past," he said, adding that there were no clear policies in place to prevent such abuse.
Idris added that firmer guidelines would be revealed in about one or two months.
When asked if it could be a criminal offence to falsely claim to hold a PhD, Idris said the matter need to be studied properly before any statement could be issued.