Turgay Avci Steps Down Amid Higher Ed Scandal

Turgay Avci Steps Down as Yodak Chairman Amid Higher Education Scandal

In a significant development within the higher education sector of Northern Cyprus, Turgay Avci has resigned from his position as chairman of the Higher Education Accreditation Authority (Yodak). Avci’s decision to step down came after a visit to Turkish Cypriot Leader Ersin Tatar on Friday, where he tendered his resignation. The move is seen as an effort by Avci to prevent further damage to Yodak’s reputation amidst a scandal that has rocked the institution.

Earlier in the week, Leader Tatar had publicly called for Avci’s resignation following allegations of diploma forgery and bribery that have implicated several high-profile figures in the north, including Avci himself. Both Avci and former Yodak board member Mehmet Hasguler were arrested on charges of accepting under-the-table payments during the accreditation process for the Cyprus Health and Social Sciences University (KSTU)’s medical school. Although they were released on bail, the scandal has continued to cast a shadow over the higher education authority.

In response to the unfolding events, Tatar had instructed the supreme court to dismiss Avci from his role. The court was in the process of evaluating this request, with senior judge Gokhan Asafogullari poised to investigate Avci’s conduct. However, with Avci’s resignation now official, this investigation is expected to be halted.

In the interim, Yodak’s deputy chairman Hasan Amca has assumed temporary leadership of the authority. With Avci’s departure, Amca is anticipated to be a strong candidate for the permanent chairmanship.

The scandal and subsequent resignation have underscored the challenges facing the higher education sector in Northern Cyprus. As the judicial process continues, there is a growing call for reforms to ensure integrity and transparency within academic institutions.

For more detailed coverage and updates on this story, readers are encouraged to follow the Cyprus Mail on Google News.


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