Thursday, March 24, 2016

JAMB probes 15 staff for UTME centres’ crisis

The Registrar/Chief Executive of Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, Prof. Dibu, Ojerinde, has said 15 employees of the agency are currently under investigation for allegedly compromising standard in the accreditation of examination centres that defrauded JAMB on the availability of adequate infrastructure.
Ojerinde said this during the visit of the House of Representatives Committee to the JAMB head office in Abuja on Wednesday.
The alleged compromise, Ojerinde said, led to technical problems encountered during the conduct of the 2016 UTME.
“A committee has been set up to investigate the role of some of our staff, about 15 of them, who conducted accreditation for some centers and if they are found guilty, they risk jail terms,” he said.
Also, the House of Representatives’ members made a U-turn and certified the computer-based test for the conduct of Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination into tertiary institutions across the country.
The decision came barely one week after it said that the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board should revert to the paper-pencil test in the conduct of UTME.
The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Basic Education, Mr. Zakari Mohammed, stated this during a fact-finding mission to JAMB Headquarters, where they also supervised the rescheduled examinations in Abuja.
The JAMB employees under probe were said to have refused to conduct proper due diligence about the centres – a development that was responsible for complaints from the centres, including light and computer failure.
According to Mohammed, Nigeria cannot afford to return to PPT. He said that contrary to insinuations, the House of Representative never took a position on the CBT.
He said, “Basically, we need to be educated more. We are in support of the CBT and we cannot go back to paper-pencil; we must be in tandem with the world in the conduct of our examinations.
“The House (of Representatives) did not take any position on CBT, but there were fractions on the floor as to the adoption of both methods and I believe it is the reason why the House Committee on Basic Education was mandated to investigate. Nigeria cannot afford to maintain double standard as we know other African countries such as Uganda have been to our country to replicate our system such as the CBT.”

We make provision for only 400,000 UTME candidates – NUC

The National Universities Commission has said only 400,000 out of the 1.5 million candidates that  sit  the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination yearly  gain admission to Nigerian universities, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.
The NUC Executive Secretary, Prof. Julius Okojie,  said  this when  Edo State Governor  Adams Oshiomhole  visited the commission on Wednesday in Abuja.
Oshiomhole was at NUC to collect the Certificate of Recognition for the new Edo State University, Iyanmo.
Okojie said new universities were needed to boost access to higher education while making sure that quality was not compromised.
He said,  “I am always happy when a new university comes on board; what that means is that we are expanding and we are opening up access.
“We know the number of candidates  that sit for UTME organised by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board every year.
“However, out of the 1.5 million candidates who take  UTME every year, we are barely able to make provision for only about 400,000 students.
“The new university will, therefore, be accessible not only to candidates  from Edo State but those from Ondo State and other states.”
According to the executive secretary, the Edo State University,  has become the 41st state university and the 142nd university in Nigeria.
Oshiomhole said  for sound university education, there was a need to produce sound secondary school graduates who would be able to face the rigours of university education.
He said, “We have structures that are strong and well designed; we are building more faculties.
“We are building more standard  hostels; students will behave based on the influence of the environment.
“So, it is my hope that we will make the right level of investment and the university will charge fees that will enable it to access revenue for sustained development without depending much on the  state government.”