The Future of Digital
Student Data Portability

AQVN: African Qualifications Verification Network Report

May 18, 2016
10 a.m.-10:30 a.m.


Joe Samuels
Chief Executive Officer
SAQA South African Qualifications Authority
CEO, South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) Joe Samuels specializes in educational policy and change, qualifications frameworks and popular education. He holds a BSc (Hon) and an MPhil from the University of the Western Cape. He serves on various Ministerial Committees, prestigious Boards and International multi-lateral organisations. SAQA is a model statutory body that embraces social justice and environmental sustainability. It lives its brand essence of authenticity through overseeing the development and implementation of the NQF. The NQF is the South African government’s principle instrument for recognising and quality assuring qualifications, contributing to the full development of all learners and socio-economic developments, focussing particularly on poor and rural communities.


The African Qualifications Verification Network (AQVN) consists of 14 African countries (South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Ghana, Namibia, Botswana, Malawi, Tanzania, Gabon, DRC, Kenya, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe) committed to promote genuine qualifications and to build trust in African qualifications through the elimination of qualifications fraud. It was established at a meeting hosted by SAQA in November 2014. These countries have adopted a Joint Declaration on building trust and promoting genuine qualifications on the African continent. SAQA provides the secretariat for the AQVN. The long-term vision of the AQVN is to drive sustainable cooperation among African nations and cement relationships. Through these partnerships and increased capacity to verify qualifications as well as the establishment of the necessary infrastructure, skills and the sharing of knowledge the AQVN will be used to concretely contribute to building an Africa-wide network that will support the objectives of the Addis Convention, signed in December 2014. A key objective of the Addis Convention is promoting mobility of learners and professionals across the African continent. Through the public launching of the AQVN it will be given the necessary visibility and profile so that it can be strengthened and expanded. The AQVN at its launch wants to explore innovative ways including digital and other time and cost effective means to verify foreign qualifications. As part of its plans for expansion organisations that have been invited to participate in the launch are from the SADC region as well as other countries such as Ghana, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Gabon, and Nigeria. The launch will furthermore focus on setting up the necessary governance structures to ensure a well run and a well-functioning organization. Partnerships with organizations will a similar interest will be sought through the Groningen Declaration Network as well as the establishment of joint projects including pilot projects on digitization, sharing of expertise and information, funding, etc.

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