Twitter row between Saudi officials heats up

Twitter row between Saudi officials heats up
A high profile Twitter spat between two Saudi officials may well leave the keyboard and end up in court.
2 min read
05 June, 2015
5.4 million Saudis tweet more than 210 million tweets per month
In Twitter obsesed Saudi Arabia, a government official has accused a colleague of being involved in bogus mail-order academic certificates leading to vows of legal action.

Saudi newspaper al-Watan has reported that Director General of the Saudi Ministry of Social Affairs Dr. Naif al-Subhi intends to take legal action against Shura Council member Muwafig al-Ruwaili for tweets he deems are defamatory.

Ruwaili accused Subhi on Twitter of endorsing long-distance learning and personally taking part in providing long-distance courses in academic institutions that hand out degrees to unqualified students, flooding the Kingdom with mail-order certificates.

See also: Dr No-degree: Saudi Arabia's plague of fake academic credentials

Ruwaili has spearheaded an online campaign under the Arabic language hashtag #They've_destroyed_me against academic fraud in Saudi Arabia, exposing the myriad of institutions giving out degrees to anyone willing to pay.  

Subhi who is a professor of psychology retaliated at first by unfolowing Ruwaili from his Twitter account but he is now in the early phases of prosecuting Ruwaili for defaming his character and making false accusations.

Saudi Activists have claimed engineers, doctors and government officials are all working in Saudi Arabia with fake academic certificates.

In 2014, Saudi security arrested a man and his daughter for forging academic credentials, police said a PhD cost $13,300, an MA $5,300, and a BA just $4,000.

This is not the first time a Saudi citizen has found himself in hot water over internet usage, last month a disabled man was sentenced to 100 lashes and 18 months in jail for complaining about medical treatment on Twitter.