Lawmakers ask JAMB to extend 2017 UTME registration deadline

The House of Representatives has urged the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB to extend the one month deadline given to applicants for the 2017 UTME exercise by at least another month to create more space for prospective applicants.

The call was contained in a motion on Tuesday raised by Danburan Nuhu (Kano-APC)

Mr. Nuhu said during the 2016 UTME exercise, about 1.6 million applicants registered out of which about one million passed while the 2017 exercise might reach 2million across the country given the growing number of applicants.

“Some of the approved centres are registering 250 applicants at a time and most of them are not spacious, do not have adequate number of computers,” he said.

He urged the examination body to specify the requirements including safety measures, which qualify any centre to participate in the conduct of UTME Computer Based Test.

He also urged JAMB to deploy safety equipment to each centre to forestall any incidence of stampede due to overcrowding.

The motion was unanimously adopted by the House and the committee on basic education was mandated to direct JAMB to comply with the resolutions.

The JAMB has repeatedly said it has no plans of extending the April 19 registration deadline for the UTME.

On Monday, the agency said it had registered about 600,000 applicants already.


Source: Premium Times

JAMB arrests 25 persons for extortion, sale of UTME materials.

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, on Saturday announced the arrest of about 25 persons throughout the country for extortion and illegally selling registration materials to the 2017 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, candidates.

The culprits, according to the Registrar/Chief Executive of JAMB, Is-haq Oloyede, were apprehended by a combined team of its Anti-Corruption and Transparency Unit, ACTU, members of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, and the Nigeria Police Force, following a tip-off.

He said that the e-Brochure and e-Syllabus which were meant to be free were being sold by the culprits as high as N800 each nationwide, while at the same time also extorting money and inflating cost of registration from candidates.

Among the registration materials being sold by them include copies of the UTME e-Brochure and e-Syllabus.

Speaking with journalists in his office in Bwari, Abuja, shortly after the arrests, Mr. Oloyede, a professor, said the people that were caught were those who were on illegal pilgrimage.

He said, “Our quality assurance unit, particularly the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Unit had to go out to see what is happening, following reports of extortion. We were having reports that candidates are paying more than the N5,500 that is required. The perpetrators have been cautioned and are presently under surveillance. For many of them that have been caught, I don’t think they will want to be caught for the second time in the future after serving the severe punishments awaiting them.

“We keep on telling people that they are to pay just N5,500, which is N5,000 to JAMB and N500 for the book (e-Brochure and e-Syllabus) and that is all. But for the centre where they register, the owner of the centres will get a maximum of N700. We have arrested about 25 persons, all over the country. They are those who are doing what they are not supposed to do, by charging the candidates higher than expected. They will not escape justice, they will appear in Court.”

According to him, JAMB has not asked anybody to pay extra money or asked anybody to go to any business centre for the creation of profile.

Mr. Oloyede said the banks and Computer-Based Test centres have reached an agreement with JAMB, that they would create the profile for the candidates.

“And whether you go to the banks, NIPOST or anywhere to buy the pin, it is part of their responsibility to create the profile for the candidates. Nobody is expected to pay more than what we have specified. But what we have found out is that many people are gullible. What we have done is that the ACTU had gone out and raided the centres. We found out that many of the centres are playing on the ignorance of the candidates. We have advertised in 10 national newspapers, yet they still allow themselves to be extorted”, he emphasised.

Mr. Oloyede also faulted claims by many of the candidates who have the impression that it would be better for them to register only in JAMB-owned centres.

He said, “It is not true, whether you register at the JAMB centres or in any accredited centres, there is no difference. But we have large number of people in CBT centres owned by JAMB. I think that is unnecessary. You can go to NIPOST, you can go to other accredited CBT centres.

“People are saying that there is poor connectivity, I don’t know what they mean by that. May be, they are using old terms. Many of the business centres who want us to return to the old practice or those who are producing the scratch cards and want to continue extorting money from people are the ones echoing this noise and creating unnecessary problem for the candidates.”

While assuring that every eligible candidate would be registered before the end of the one month exercise, the JAMB CEO, cautioned against panic registration, adding that “if anybody stresses himself or herself, it is because they want to do so.”

“In some cases, we rush to something that we do not need to rush for. There is also this argument that banks are having problems, if you have problems going to banks, why can’t you go to NIPOST? Why can’t you go to online for interswitch or remitter? We have sold our pin to all these people for the candidates to access all these online. We have shouted and made the noise. When people are not listening, what can we do?”, he stressed.

He commanded members of the NSCDC and the Nigeria Police who, he said, have been very wonderful.


Source: Premium Times

JAMB, banks trade accusations over delays in registration

With Benue candidates encountering more difficulties in their bids to register for the 2017/2018 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME), banks and the Joint Admissions Matriculation Board (JAMB) have continued to trade blames.

While JAMB has accused the banks of causing the delays, the banks have shot back, arguing that JAMB was solely responsible for generating the Personal Identification Number (PIN), which was the main cause of the delay

Simeon Isimishere, the Operations Manager of Zenith Bank, Makurdi branch, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), on Friday in Makurdi that the banks were not responsible for the delays experienced by applicants seeking to register the JAMB examinations.

Mr. Isimishere expressed surprise at the allegations by Samuel Umuru, Head of JAMB office in Makurdi, that the banks were responsible for the delays and confusion.

“How can JAMB blame the banks? Generating the PINs is the main headache and that is solely handled by JAMB. The banks only issue what has been generated and given to them, so how can one blame them?” he asked.

He said the banks only receive the payments and issue the PINs.

“The problem is that after getting the PINs, most applicants are unable to access the JAMB website,” he said.

He explained that the initial PINs that were generated by the board had issues and could not be activated.

The official, however, disclosed that the banks were working with the board to resolve the issues and announced that the problems had been “brought down to the barest minimum”.

A cross section of the applicants, who spoke with NAN, however said that they were no more experiencing the challenges.

An applicant, Adasu Emmanuel, said that he had difficulties activating the PIN that was given to him from the bank and made several trips, from the bank to the JAMB office, to rectify the problem.

“Already, the problem has been fixed. We fixed it this afternoon (Friday),” he said.

Another applicant, Gloria Asom, who was still on the queue in the bank, also agreed that there was much improvement because “the queue is moving fast and there is no much confusion again”.

She said that the lines were moving fast, but added that applicants were returning to the bank to complain of invalid PINs.

Reacting to the damage in the Makurdi JAMB office, Mr Moses Yamu, Public Relations Officer of the Benue Police Command, said that the protesters were dispersed before they could commit much havoc.

He said that no suspect was arrested, but disclosed that investigation was ongoing.

“Normalcy has been restored and officials of the examinations board have resumed their duties,” he said.

NAN recalls that applicants seeking to purchase the JAMB forms besieged the Makurdi JAMB office on Thursday, to protest the cumbersome registration process.

The angry applicants broke windows and destroyed the office signpost.


Source: NAN

No going back on Computer Based Test – JAMB

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board, JAMB, has faulted a report that it had dumped the Computer-Based Test (CBT) mode for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME.

The board restated its determination to continue all its examinations using CBT mode.

A statement issued in Abuja on Thursday by the spokesperson of JAMB, Fabian Benjamin, said the clarification became necessary “following the misleading caption in the front page of Nation of Thursday March 30 2017. with the headline: “JAMB dumps CBT, adopts eight keys.”

He said, “The headline was not only misleading but capable of causing panic, distortion and confusion in the minds of Nigerians particularly the candidates planning to take the UTME of a well-conceived CBT examination which the Board was consolidating on the gains and feat recorded.”

JAMB registrar, Ishaq Oloyede, had on Wednesday issued a statement at Arewa House, Kaduna, at a strategic planning retreat on monitoring and supervision of 2017 UTME.

Mr. Oloyede disclosed the board’s decision to adopt the use of the eight keys instead of the mouse.

He said: “From the general feedback on the adoption of the Computer Based Test mode, we have noted the challenge of computer low level literacy of some candidates, especially with the phobia for the mouse.

“This has been responsible partly for the call by some people for reversal to the Paper and Pencil Test mode. In order to ensure equity and level playground for all candidates taking the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, the Board has designed a system that will allow candidates use only eight (8) keys without the use of the mouse.

“All the candidates need to do is to press the letters A, B, C, D for responses (answer) to questions and keys:

P = Previous question

N = Next question

S = Submit responses when candidate has finished examination

R = Reverse (do not intend to go further to submit again)”

However, both the eight keys and the mouse are components of the CBT mode but media reports misconstrued this, he said.

The JAMB spokesperson while chiding those media reports said, “In our attempt to make CBT friendly, JAMB introduced the use of 8 keys without a mouse. This we have explained to Nigerians and all stakeholders at the just concluded strategic planning Retreat on “Supervision and Evaluation of the conduct of the 2017 UTME in Kaduna, where we had the privilege of having over 100 distinguished scholars from the academia, civil society and other critical stakeholders.”

Mr. Benjamin pointed that nowhere was the issue of JAMB dumping the CBT contemplated during the retreat.

“We see this embarrassing caption as deliberate effort to thwart the Board’s noble intention. The question we are asking is on what platform will the 8 keys be?

The spokesperson asked Nigerians to disregard the report.


Source: Premium Times

After failing JAMB 7 times, this lady graduated as LASU’s best student.

Elizabeth Orefuwa, the best graduating student of Lagos State University (LASU), says she wrote the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) seven times before gaining admission into the institution.

Orefuwa graduated with a cumulative grade point average of 4.74 in accounting education at the 21st convocation of LASU.

The chartered accountant on Wednesday said she would have given up on her dream of pursuing university education but wanted to satisfy her father.

Orefuwa said she became an associate accountant in 2010.

“When I eventually secured admission to LASU, my aim was not to be the best graduating student. I just wanted to satisfy my dad’s yearning,” she said.

“The journey through the institution was not easy; it took me seven years of writing the UTME before I finally gained admission in 2012.

“I also applied for direct entry three times at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.

“During this period of waiting, I started professional career at the Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigeria (ICAN) in 2007 and became qualified as an Associate Chartered Accountant (ACA) in 2010.”

Orefuwa, who is pregnant, got married at the beginning of her final year.

“I had a CGPA of 4.72 before marriage and I graduated with 4.74. I got married during my final year in 2015 and my husband was very supportive throughout that period,” she said.

All the best graduating students were women apart from Shobowale Olumide Adekunle, the best graduating student in the faculty of engineering.

Lawal Amidat Abiola was the best graduate of the faculty of law while Oshikomaya Christy Kemi emerged best from the school of transport.

Oduntan Saidat Abimbola and Bello Adebola Oluwadamilola emerged best in the school of communications and college of medicine respectively.

Herietta Ugwoma led the faculty of social sciences while Oyerinde Faith Temilola was the brightest graduate from the faculty of science.

Lanre Adigun Fagbohun, the vice-chancellor, said there were 36,481 graduating students.


Source: The Cable

Why we introduced mock exam – JAMB

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has explained why it introduced mock examination in its plan of action preparatory to the 2017 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) scheduled for May 20, 2017.

The board said it was worried at the way some candidates, particularly those not conversant with computers, fail the exams, not because they were not studious enough but because they lack the basic knowledge of how the computer-based test (CBT) exam works.

JAMB spokesman, Dr. Fabian Benjamin, said the mock exam, though not compulsory, was meant to acquaint interested candidates with the new CBT exam adopted by JAMB a few years ago for the conduct of matriculation exams.

He encouraged candidates to take advantage of the window to familiarise themselves with the workings of CBT, to avoid unnecessary mistakes during the examination, which could affect their chances of securing admission.

“The board will mount a mock examination in all the accredited CBT centres, to prepare and familiarise interested candidates with the CBT environment. Interested candidates are advised to indicate their interest in the mock examination during the registration process.

“The CBT centres are allowed to collect through their CBT centre bank accounts, a separate N700 only for this exercise after noti?cation of centre has been received by the candidate. The payment for mock examination shall be made to the centres to which the candidate is assigned after the noti?cation of assigned centres for the mock examination,” he explained

The board also announced that it would sell the UTME application documents between March 20 and April 19, 2017.

“Upon purchase of the form, candidates would be issued with e-bronchure, video messages, e-syllabus and other easy and self-directory materials that would give candidates step-by-step guide for successful completion of the application form,” the board said.

While warning candidates against registering at centres other than JAMB-accredited CBT centres and state offices, the board maintained that not complying with guidelines would automatically disqualify candidates.

JUST IN: 2017 UTME to commence May 6.

The Joint Admissions Matriculation Board (JAMB) says the 2017 Unified Matriculation Tertiary Examinations will begin on May 6.

The board made the announcement in the early hours of Monday via its website.

The exams will run through to May 20, excluding May 12 to allow candidates write further mathematics examination for the West African Examinations Council (WAEC).

According to the board, sale of the 2017 application form will begin on March 20 and end on April 19.

Candidates are expected to pay N5,500 for the registration package which includes registration fees, reading text, syllabus and brochure.

“UTME 2017 exam starts May 6 to May 20, 2017 (excluding May 12, 2017 because of Candidates sitting for WAEC’s Further Maths exam),” the board wrote on Twitter.

“Sales of form ends on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 while the registration portal closes on Saturday, April 22, 2017.

“For direct entry candidates, the application will be on sale from Sunday, April 23, 2017.”

JAMB had earlier announced it would organise an optional mock examination for interested candidates and urged candidates to be wary of fraudsters who were circulating fake application forms.

In February, JAMB announced that it had completed a joint timetable with the management of the West African Examination Council and National Examination Council to avoid clashing examination dates.


Source: The Cable

Candidates with awaiting results can apply for UTME – JAMB

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has dismissed reports that it has scrapped awaiting results for prospective candidates.

There had been reports that the examination body has barred candidates awaiting their ordinary level results from sitting for the UTME exams.

But on its Twitter page on Wednesday, JAMB said candidates with awaiting results can apply for the UTME.

The body said part if its press statement was misquoted by the media.

“JAMB has NOT scrapped Awaiting result for prospective candidates for the forthcoming exam.

“Candidates with Awaiting results can apply. But they must have gotten their results at the point of admission into their institution.

“If you apply with Awaiting Result at the point of registration, your result must be available while u go for screening for admission.

“JAMB will not deny any Candidate the right to quality education. Please don’t be misguided. Part of the press statement was misunderstood

“That is why during registration those with results will be uploading their results,while Awaiting Result candidates will not upload anything.”

JAMB received 11.7 million applications between 2010-2016 – NBS

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) data reflect that 11,703,709 applications were received between 2010 and 2016.

A report on, “JAMB Admitted Candidates by State and Gender within Faculty’’, released by NBS in Abuja on Monday said that 2,674,485 students were admitted across the 36 states and the FCT between 2010 and 2015.

“In 2010, a total of 1,513,940 applications were received while 423,531 students were admitted.

“This shows that 28 per cent of students who applied for admission were admitted across the 36 states and the FCT in the year under review.

“Adamawa and Niger States admitted 38 per cent of students who applied for admission in 2010.

“Both states received 14,483 and 16,556 applications while 5,678 and 6,278 students were admitted, respectively,’’ it stated.

Similarly, the report stated that 1,636,356 applications were received while 417,341 students were admitted in 2011.
“This simply means that 26 per cent of students who applied for admission were admitted across the 36 states and the FCT in 2011,” it said.

The report said Yobe with 7,879 applications and 3,185 admissions, had 40 per cent of students who applied admitted.
NBS report stated that 1,632,835 applications were received in 2012, while 447,176 admissions were granted in 2012, representing 27 per cent of applications for admissions during the year.

“Yobe with 9,064 applications and 4,138 admissions has the highest percentage of applications for admissions with 46 per cent recorded.

“The lowest percentages of applications for admissions were recorded in 2013 and 2014 with 24 per cent and 25 per cent of applications for admissions recorded, respectively during the period under review.

“Yobe with 11,222 applications and 4,084 admissions has the highest percentage of applications for admissions with 36 per cent recorded in 2013.

“ Jigawa with 16,214 applications and 6,169 admissions has the highest percentage of applications for admissions with 38 per cent recorded in 2014,’’ the report stated.

According to the report, the highest percentage of applications for admissions are recorded in 2015 with 30 per cent of applications for admissions recorded.

“Yobe with 17,461 applications and 9,703 admissions has the highest percentage of applications for admissions in the year with 56 per cent recorded,’’ it said.


Source: NAN

JAMB to raid cyber cafes across Nigeria

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, says it is embarking on a national raid of cyber cafes, ahead of its Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME.

Fabian Benjamin, JAMB’s Head, Media and Information, told the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Lagos that the exercise would be jointly carried out with the officials of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC.

He said the raid was meant to smash the operations of some syndicates operating cyber cafes to print fake UTME registration numbers and application documents to prospective candidates.

According to him, four suspects have already been apprehended in Ekiti for printing and selling fake registration documents for the 2017 examination.

“This development is an eye-opener that same could be happening in other parts of the country.

“We shall, in collaboration with the NSCDC, commence a national raid of all cyber cafe in the country, any moment from now.

“We will not fold our arms and watch some elements defraud Nigerians, parents in particular, who desire education for their children.

“These persons arrested in Ekiti were holed out in their cyber café, where they have been carrying out their illegal activities and had defrauded prospective candidates to the tune of over N10 million.

“We had a synergy with NSCDC, which led to the discovery of serious illegal manipulation of JAMB registration forms, numbers as well as admission letters,’’ he said.

Benjamin warned prospective candidates against poor handling of information regarding the sale of the registration documents to avoid falling prey to the activities of the suspects.

“We had warned severally that we had yet to commence the sales of the 2017 registration documents, and that candidates should be patient because we are putting finishing touches to the entire examination process.

“This is because we want to tackle all the hitches that had been associated with the examination in the past years and make it almost 100 per cent hitch-free.

“As soon as this is achieved, and we are set to roll out the registration documents, we will do massive sensitisation.

“Candidates must realise that no cyber cafe is authorised to do any form of registration, as candidates who defy this warning are doing so at their own risk,” he said.

I have never collected bribe – JAMB Registrar

The Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, Is-haq Oloyede, has declared that he has never collected bribe from anyone.

Mr. Oloyede, who is also the immediate past Vice Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, made this disclosure while reacting to allegations of fraud levelled against him by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.

The union had in a petition sent to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, accused Mr. Oloyede and the incumbent vice chancellor of the university, Abdulganiy Ambali, of fraud totalling more than N2 billion.

Other allegations levelled against the duo include pension fraud, unremitted deductions, extortion from students, contract inflation and kick-backs; as well as unlawful payments to
ex-principal officers of the university.

In his reaction, Mr. Oloyede denied all the allegations. The don said he has never taken bribe,
extorted anyone, inflated contracts nor accepted gifts from any contractor.

The JAMB registrar also maintained that he operated a transparent system within the period he served the university as vice chancellor.

“I am extremely selective in accepting gifts from even personal friends. My needs are limited and my legitimate income is sufficient to spend on my volunteer work,” the JAMB boss said.

“I have never in my life collected bribe, inflated contracts, extorted anyone nor accepted gifts beyond “Thank You greeting cards” from any contractor, dead or alive.”

Before his appointment as JAMB registrar, Mr. Oloyede served as vice chancellor of the University of Ilorin between 2008 and 2012.

Within the period, he served as Chairman of the Association of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, AVCNU; initiator of the Association of West Africa Universities, AWAU; President of the Association of African Universities, AAU; and Board member of the
Association of Commonwealth Universities, ACU as well as the International Association of Universities, IAU.

In August 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Mr. Oloyede the registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB. He was appointed alongside sixteen other heads of parastatals and agencies under the Federal Ministry of Education.

In its reaction, the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, kicked against Mr. Oloyede’s appointment, stressing that the former vice chancellor should be probed. The union also alleged that Mr. Oloyede’s era as vice chancellor at the University of Ilorin was
characterized by anti-democratic and anti-union activities.

But in his response to the union’s petition sent to the EFCC on Thursday, Mr. Oloyede said that his response to the allegations was necessary because there is need to “thwart the Satanic objective of distracting me from the national assignment which they protested against but failed.”

The JAMB boss however called on the anti-graft agency, EFCC, to investigate the allegations and take necessary action after establishing the truthfulness of the case brought before it by the

JAMB: Computer-based Test Has Curbed Exam Malpractices – CPAN

The recent introduction of Computer-based Test (CBT) by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), is one giant stride, which has drastically reduced the spate of examination malpractices in the country.

The President, Computer-Based Test Centre Proprietors Association of Nigeria (CPAN), Engineer Sage Udibuami, who stated this at the association’s maiden press conference at the weekend in Abuja, blamed the high  rate of exam malpractices on gross moral decadence.

Udibuami who maintained that the adoption of CBT as a strategy to eradicate  all forms of  malpractices in UTME exams is impacted positively on the nation’s educational sector and beyond, said, CPAN, has no regret partnering with JAMB.

While disclosing that they have successfully conducted the UTME exams for three years, CPAN President further explained that their decision to invest in CBT is to help  close the g ap of  infrastructural deficit in various Centres national wide, following JAMB’s outcry.

According to Udibuami, “CPAN has made tremendous impact through CBT as exam cheating has been curbed. There’s no more leakage of question papers, swapping of answer cheats and above all results are now released within 24 hours.”

Explaining that CPAN is a self regulating body and foot soldiers for the UTME exams, he warned that the body will not hesitate to identify and expose any of its members involved in exam malpractice.

Describing CPAN as the largest exam network in the world,  Udibuami  said, the body has the capacity to conduct over 600,000 examination daily for candidates in 650 centres with no fewer than 250 computers.

He advocated that the spread of more CBT Centres in Cross River,  Jigawa, Borno, Benue, Ekiti and Osun State s respectively to enable major stakeholders and philanthropist make positive inputs.

Read More: leadership

JAMB Introduces CCTV In Exam Centres

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has said all computer-based test centre proprietors must install closed circuit televisions as one of the requirements for operations.

It also accused operators of the centres of sending fake messages to defraud candidates and providing mandatory training for same.

Among other newly approved standardisation methods, the board said the CCTV must show live recordings of the “entry door (from the inside), exit door (from the outside), cross sectional coverage for examination rooms, external building and server rooms.’’

JAMB Registrar, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede said this on Tuesday during a standardisation meeting with CBT centre proprietors at the University of Lagos.

Oloyede announced a total sum of N6,200, covering  the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination form, CBT centre service fee and the JAMB textbook which would be paid by prospective candidates in 2017.

He added that more than one million candidates sat for the CBT variety of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination in 2015.

He, however, accused CBT centres of “extorting candidates by charging above approved rates, subletting access codes to cyber cafes, encouraging multiple registration and punishing uncompromising candidates by changing their centres and/or institutions without their knowledge/consent,’’ among other infractions.

Credit: punchng

JAMB Meets With CBT Centre Owners Over 2017 Exams

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says arrangements have been concluded to have an interaction with owners of Computer Based Test (CBT) centres in the country ahead of the 2017 UTME.

The board’s Head, Media and Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, made the disclosure in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos.

According to the statement, the meeting which comes up on Tuesday at the University of Lagos is to fine tune all areas of challenges geared towards conducting a hitch-free examination in 2017.

It said that the meeting would determine the number of centres to be used for the 2017 all CBT Unified Tertiary Matriculation Board (UTME) exercise.

“These are centres that must have a minimum of 250 and above terminals (computers).

“We will not hesitate to disqualify any centre that falls short of the requirements,’’ the statement said.

“We will equally not compromise on the selection of these centres as they will fully be responsible for our registration and examinations and other related responsibilities that they will be saddled with from time to time as we introduce new measures.’’

It added that the board decided to come face to face with owners of these centre to ensure it got first hand information on the challenges they were faced with in the course of the examinations.

“As partners in progress, we need to sit down on a round table and tell each other the truth so as to get to the root of all the hiccups.

“We should all feel concerned even if it was just one centre that had challenges or hitches during the conduct of the last examination.

“Nigerians expect a lot from us and we must strive not to fail them.

“We are looking at strengthening what was done holistically to improve on the previous exercises,’’ the statement quoted the board’s Registrar, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede as saying.

It added that the board was committed to giving Nigerians globally accepted standard in the conduct of the examinations.

The statement said that the board would commence the sale of application forms soon and urged prospective candidates not to patronise any self-acclaimed agent as the board had not and would not appoint any.

It urged candidates to always visit the board’s website for information.

The statement noted that in a few months, the board had been working tirelessly on processes that were connected to the conduct of the examination.

It added that the board had taken stock of all the challenges that were recorded during the 2016 exercise, especially CBT centre-related issues.

It said the board had resolved to give every Nigerian child desirous of tertiary education a level playing ground to compete for the available space in these tertiary institutions.

“We are mindful of the fact that any child that writes in a dysfunctional centre is at disadvantage.

“All candidates must have same conditions, atmosphere and working facilities,’’ the statement said.

Credit: NAN

I Started Acting After I Failed JAMB, Watch Mercy Johnson’s Biography

Ace Nollywood actress and celebrity, Mercy Johnson, reveals her morning routine to her fans. Who would have thought that the nollywood star wakes up as early as 5:30am, talk less of cooking for her husband. Well, she revealed that she does her cooking herself and dresses the kids to school all by herself. She revealed these and more on her Instagram page. The actress also revealed that she began acting after she failed JAMB. Watch her biography below:


FG Orders Separate Cut-Off Marks for Varsities, Others

The Federal Government has directed the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board to consult with the relevant stakeholders so as to come up with new and separate cut-off marks for admission into universities, polytechnics and colleges of education from next year.

A statement issued on Monday by the Deputy Director (Press and Public Relations), in the Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, said the Minister of State for Education, Prof. Anthony Anwukah, gave the directive after a one-day meeting with chief executive officers in the ministry.

According to him, it is wrong to subject candidates seeking admission to different higher institutions to the same cut-off marks when the duration and contents of their courses are different.

The minister also approved the decision by JAMB to reduce its cut-off marks for admission into tertiary institutions.

Anwukah maintained that the current policy of adopting 180 as the uniform cut-off point for admission lacked fairness, equity and logic.

Goong said, “The minister is in full support of the decision of the board to introduce discriminatory cut-off marks for admissions into the institutions.”

Anwukah also directed JAMB to publish, in full, the list of unutilised admission slots into all universities, polytechnics and colleges of education on a course-by-course basis at the end of the first leg of the admission process to enable students and parents  to take full advantage of existing admission vacancies in institutions where such exist.

The minister said this would prevent a situation where some institutions had more than the number of students they needed, while others could hardly fill their quotas.

At the meeting, JAMB Registrar/Chief Executive, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, told the minister that the belief that the carrying capacity of Nigerian universities was far below the number of candidates that qualified for admission was wrong.

According to him, only those with 180 cut-off mark can be considered for admission, adding that out of those who met the criterion, a significant number might not have the five credits required.

JAMB set to reduce 180 cut-off mark for 2016/2017 academic session

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has concluded arrangements to reduce the 180 cut-off mark for admission to tertiary institutions.

The registrar and chief executive of JAMB, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, said this during the second technical committee meeting for 2016 Admissions to Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria, at the Alvan Ikoku College of Education, Owerri, adding that the decision became imperative as a result of the inability of some of the institutions to implement the cut-off mark.

According to the registrar, “It was in a meeting of the Board of higher institutions and other Stakeholders that a decision of 180 as the 2016 National cut-off mark was reached.”

He, however, stressed that many institutions, though part of the decision, had expressed concern on their inability to effect this cut-off mark as they are finding it difficult to fill a reasonable percentage of their quota if the rule is strictly applied as we insist.

“A large number of institutions, particularly the budding ones, have applied for a waiver to enable them admit candidates who in some instances scored below 180 marks. For some, this may sound unreasonable with the largely false impression that a large percentage of those who score above 180 and are qualified for admission cannot find any placement in our institutions.

“I think this cry needs attention, otherwise, some of these institutions whether public or privately-owned may soon begin to wobble or even close shops. This will be counter-productive and even defeat the Government Policy of expansion of access to higher education and manpower development.”

Oloyede added that “As a Board, we have studied the trend of admissions and have come up with a finding that hardly do the institutions collectively fill their quota annually. Indeed, in some cases, up to 50% of approved quota is wasted particularly by upright institutions which do not circumspect the rule. Unfortunately, a large number of institutions flagrantly disregarded the cut-off and many other policies yet they found a way to eventually regularize the illegal admissions through corrupt process.”

He however noted that the new flexible cut-off will only be applicable to institutions that have exhausted the list of candidates that scored the 180 cut-off mark.

“As a Board, we have collated the requests from the various Senates and Academic Boards and have made your pleas known to appropriate authorities . Just this morning we received a green light on flexible cut-off mark only for institutions which have exhausted the list of candidates with 180 and above, subject , of course to a minimum acceptable to JAMB and meeting of other pre-requisite”, he added.

He however assured that the Board would cooperate with the various institutions in carrying out the mandates of their respective Senates and Academic Boards on admission matters, adding that, “the Board would not impose candidates on them but, as a referee, would ensure that no applicant is unjustifiably denied the opportunity of access to Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria.

“In this respect, together, we should be seen in a conspicuous and proven manner that we have the interest of the Nation in mind in carrying out our statutory functions”.

He warned that no institution, whether Federal or State, will be allowed to continue with admission of students after the November 30th deadline.

JAMB to Reduce 180 Cut-Off Mark

There are strong indications that the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) may approve the reduction of 180 cut-off mark for admission to tertiary institutions.

The Registrar and Chief Executive of JAMB, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, who made the disclosure during the 2nd Technical Committee Meeting for 2016 Admissions to Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria, at the Alvan Ikoku College of Education, Owerri, stated that the decision became imperative as a result of the inability of some of the institutions to implement the cut-off mark.

According to the Registrar, “it was in a meeting of the Board of higher institutions and other Stakeholders that a decision of 180 as the 2016 National cut-off mark was reached”.

He continued that, “however, many Institutions, though part of the decision, have expressed concern on their inability to effect this cut-off mark as they are finding it difficult to fill a reasonable percentage of their quota if the rule is strictly applied as we insist.

“A large number of institutions, particularly the budding ones, have applied for a waiver to enable them admit candidates who in some instances scored below 180 marks. For some, this may sound unreasonable with the largely false impression that a large percentage of those who score above 180 and are qualified for admission cannot find any placement in our institutions.

“I think this cry needs attention, otherwise, some of these institutions whether public or privately-owned may soon begin to wobble or even close shops. This will be counter-productive and even defeat the Government Policy of expansion of access to higher education and manpower development”.

Oloyede therefore added that, “as a Board, we have studied the trend of admissions and have come up with a finding that hardly do the institutions collectively fill their quota annually. Indeed, in some cases, up to 50% of approved quota is wasted particularly by upright institutions which do not circumspect the rule. Unfortunately, a large number of institutions flagrantly disregarded the cut-off and many other policies yet they found a way to eventually regularize the illegal admissions through corrupt process”.

He however noted that the new flexible cut-off will only be applicable to institutions that have exhausted the list of candidates that scored the 180 cut-off mark.

“As a Board, we have collated the requests from the various Senates and Academic Boards and have made your pleas known to appropriate authorities . Just this morning we received a green light on flexible cut-off mark only for institutions which have exhausted the list of candidates with 180 and above, subject , of course to a minimum acceptable to JAMB and meeting of other pre-requisite”, he added.

He however assured that the Board would cooperate with the various institutions in carrying out the mandates of their respective Senates and Academic Boards on admission matters, adding that, “the Board would not impose candidates on them but, as a referee, would ensure that no applicant is unjustifiably denied the opportunity of access to Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria.

“In this respect, together, we should be seen in a conspicuous and proven manner that we have the interest of the Nation in mind in carrying out our statutory functions”.

He warned that no institution, whether Federal or State, will be allowed to continue with admission of students after the November 30 deadline.

We don’t have money to conduct UTME, says JAMB registrar.

Is-haq Oloyede, the registrar of JAMB, has said that the board cannot adequately fund the conduct of Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).

The professor said this in his Abuja office on Wednesday while he received a delegation of the senate committee on tertiary institutions and Tertiary Education Trust fund (TETFund).

He said: “The major challenge facing the board has to do with funding; we take N5,000 from each candidate; we do not even have the money to conduct the examination.

“Rather, we call on third party to do some of the things and they only give some commission to JAMB, because we do not have enough money to invest.

“Conduct of examination across the country requires intensive human participation; you will recruit invigilators and monitors and then it costs so much money to set exam questions.

“The capital allocation is N1 billion; the release so far is N45. 57million; the overhead cost is N50 million allocated, but N24.9 million is what we have received so far.

“The N24.9 million given is not sufficient to pay electricity bills because all the 36 states and zonal offices depend on what comes from headquarters for their funding,” Oloyede explained.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Oloyede also urged the National Assembly to review its decision to make the UTME result valid for three years.

JAMB scraps scratch cards, adopts pin vending for 2017 UTME.

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board says it will adopt “pin vending” for the 2017 UTME test, advising intending candidates to get familiar with the new approach.

The board’s Head of Media and Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, said on Wednesday in Lagos that it would no longer use scratch cards.

He said, “Candidates, wishing to sit for the 2017 examination, should start getting themselves familiar with the newly adopted process of pin vending by the board.

“We must make ourselves open to change like it is obtained in other climes.

“We are no longer going back to the use of scratch card; that method is outdated.

“Candidates wishing to register for the examination will just make online payment and get a pin with which they can upload their data.

“This new pin vending will be accessible through the options of web payment, ATM issued cards like Visa, Verve, and Master card, online Quick Teller, mobile application and Bank Branch case/card.”

Benjamin assured that the board was working hard to redress all challenges experienced by candidates during its 2016 UTME as it was preparing for the 2017 diet.

He said that all hands were on deck to ensure a hitch free conduct of the examination across the country.

“Preparations are on to ensure that all the technical hitches that manifested in the 2016 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination do not arise again.

“That is not to say that the examination will be completely hitch-free.

“But we are deploying resources to correct the ones identified already.

“In the course of the examination, should there be any other new challenges, we will act promptly.’’

The spokesman also said that the board would begin validation of UTME centres across the country soon.

He said, “We shall be going round to the proposed centres to check the state of their facilities and also to ensure that such facilities could accommodate a minimum of 250 candidates.”

Some candidates, who sat for the 2016 examination, complained of various technical hitches.

Such challenges ranged from incomplete upload of questions from servers to poor backup facilities in some centres among others.

The board’s Registrar, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, recently announced the scrapping of the use of scratch card, describing it as outdated.

He said the board decided to do away with the method because of its consistent subjection to fraudulent practices.

JAMB set to release LASU admission list.

The ?Lagos State University on Monday said its admissions merit list for the 2016/2017 academic session will be released in the next few days by the Joint Admission Matriculation Board.

The Acting Head, LASU’s Centre for Information, Press and Public Relations, Mr. Adekoya Martins, said that the number of students to be offered admission on the merit list could not be ascertained by the university because it was being handled by JAMB.

He said the university had sent a list of the successful ?candidates for the first batch of its admission screening to JAMB for approval.
He said, “Information reaching me from the admission office is that JAMB will release the merit list this week, but the number of the admitted students is undisclosed.

“We cannot actually determine the number of students that JAMB will approve for us in the first batch from the list that was ?sent to the board by the university.”

He said that the screening form for the second list will be out as soon as the merit list candidates are released.

He said that only candidates that choose the university ?as second choice could purchase the form.

Martins said sequel to the exercise for the screening of the second list candidates, a supplementary list would also be released.
LASU had adopted an online screening approach for? the admission of candidates for the 2016/2017 academic session.

The institution’s Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun, said that only candidates who chose LASU would be screened online.

Fagbohun said that an online application portal had already been designed for the candidates to upload their results, certificates and other relevant data.?

He said, “The university will go online and shortlist the credentials of successful candidates, who chose LASU as their first choice for onward transmission to JAMB.”

UNILAG To Screen Candidates Despite List Withdrawal By JAMB

The University of Lagos on Monday says it will go ahead with its screening of prospective candidates for admission into the 2016/2017 academic session as scheduled.

The institution’s Deputy Registrar, (Information), Mr. Toyin Adebule, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos.

Adebule gave the university’s position against the backdrop of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board withdrawing the list of recommended candidates for admission, earlier sent to the various universities.

JAMB, in the statement signed by its Head of Media and Information, Dr. Fabian Benjamin, stated that the withdrawal was to ensure that the senate of each of the universities performed its statutory functions.

NAN reports that UNILAG had, last month, announced that it would begin screening candidates, who chose the institution as their first choice with a cut-off point of 200 and above, between Wednesday Aug. 3, 2016 and Aug. 24, 2016.

“We want to inform the public that our screening, for candidates that will be admitted for the 2016/17 academic session, will still hold as scheduled from Aug. 3, 2016 to Aug. 24, 2016. It is true that JAMB had sent a list to us, which it had considered as those who met our cut-off point. It is this same list that it withdrew to allow the universities to carry out their admission process as required by the law setting up their senates.

“There are statutory functions meant for all university senates, among which admissions is part one. It is only after selecting the candidates for admission that the senate refers the list to JAMB for confirmation in line with the admission criteria of merit, catchment and educationally disadvantaged states. And so, it is only proper for JAMB to have taken this step, realising that it had taken over the job of the universities’ senates,’’ he said.

Adebule, however, added that the withdrawal of the list did not interfere with UNILAG’s proposed plan to screen its candidates. He added that candidates would be screened based on the authenticity of their results and their course combinations.

Credit: Punch

JAMB Withdraws 2016 Admission Lists Sent To Varsities, Others

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has withdrawn the list of recommended candidates for admission earlier sent to the tertiary institutions, the Board said in a statement on Sunday.

“This is to ensure that the University Senate perform its statutory responsibility of conducting the selection of candidates and refer it to JAMB for confirmation in line with the admission criteria of merit, catchment and educationally disadvantaged states as directed by the Minister of Education at the policy committee meeting,” Fabian Benjamin, the organisation’s head of media, said in a statement.

“The earlier list was sent to help fast track the process of admission so as to allow other tiers of institutions also conduct their admission.

“Candidates should not panic because this is part of the process of the 2016 admission exercise. JAMB regrets any inconvenience this decision would have caused the tertiary institutions

“The Board regrets any inconvenience it’s proactive step would have caused the tertiary institutions.”

Credit: Sun

JAMB To Review Criteria For Selecting Examination Centres

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says it will review criteria for selecting centres for its Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).


Dr Fabian Benjamin, the board’s Head of Media and Information, disclosed this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Lagos.


Benjamin acknowledged that there were technical hitches in about 20 of the 520 centres registered to host the 2016 UTME on the Computer Based Test (CBT) platform nationwide.


“I want to say that we are making efforts to come up with new selection method and approval of the centres we shall be
using for the conduct of our examination henceforth.

“We shall be considering using more of public owned centres and a few oragnised privately owned centres.

“From statistics available to us, we have discovered that most of the issues we had with centres during the examination were associated with those with private concerns,’’ he said.


While expressing the board’s regret over the technical problem, Benjamin, however, said he was happy that the conduct of the examination was generally successful.

He noted that over 1.6 million candidates sat for the examination within and outside the country.


Benjamin re-iterated that the board had not cancelled the entire results of the 2016 examination as was being


According to him, the board is finalising modalities for the re-take of the examination by only those with genuine cases.



Association Seeks Reduction Of JAMB Cut Off Mark

The Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) has been advised to reduce the cut off for under-graduates seeking admission into tertiary institutions to address alleged irregularities noticed in this year’s examination.

Giving his opinion on the conduct and outcome of the extermination, a member of the Association of Private Coaching Centers, Olawuyi Olufemi, said complaints ranging from non-provision of calculator, irregular shutting down of computers and non-release of the results of the students were rampant.

He said that the additional allocation of 40 marks to some students was not clear, wondering how some would benefit while others would be exempted.

Mr Olufemi further urged JAMB to find a lasting solution to alleged irregularities and requested that the body should urgently release the results still outstanding.

Some students also explained their experience, ranging from non-release of results to irregular shutting down of computers during examinations.

Credit: ChannelsTv

Senate reduces UTME registration fee to N2,500, to extend validity period to 3yrs

The Senate today passed a resolution reducing the registration fee of Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) to N2,500 from N5,650 that was paid by prospective university students this year. At the plenary session today, the senators recommended the extension of the validity period of the UTME to three academic year.

The resolution was taken following the adoption of the report of the Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFund on the inquiry into the new admission policy of the Joint Admission and
Matriculation Board (JAMB). They also resolved to amend the Act establishing JAMB to reflect the extension of the validity period which is at the moment a year.

JAMB Releases 200,000 Results As Minister Expresses Concern

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Tuesday released results of 200,000 candidates who had written the examination even as the test continued.

The Registrar/Chief Executive Officer of JAMB, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde, disclosed this during the monitoring of the exercise in Abuja and its environs.

He explained that over 200,000 candidates’ results had been released since the examination commenced on Saturday.

Ojerinde spoke just as the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, expressed concern over the plight and difficulties faced by non-computer literate students sitting for the examination.

The minister expressed his reservation when he visited some centres in the FCT to monitor the on-going Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) being conducted by JAMB.

Adamu, however, said though he was satisfied with the conduct of the CBT mode of the examination, he was glad the board had addressed most of his concerns and other Nigerians.

He said: “I seem to be very comfortable and happy with what they are doing. But my question has not been answered; that there may be people who are not computer literate, so, what do you do with them. I do not have reservation about CBT but I have sympathy for those who are not computer literate and there are many of them.”

Notwithstanding the minister’s reservation, Ojerinde urged candidates who had sat for the examination to visit the JAMB’s website and check their respective results.

According to him, “More than one million, eight hundred and fifty thousand candidates applied to take the examination nationwide in 2016.

“The figures however recorded a slight increase of 113,673 candidates who applied for the examination in 2015.”

JAMB kick-started full Computer Based Testing (CBT) in 2014 after eliminating the Paper Pencil Testing (PPT) system within that same period.

Credit: ThisDay

35 Prison Inmates To Write 2016 UTME – Controller

No fewer than 35 inmates from Ikoyi Prison in Lagos have registered to write the 2016 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME). Mr Vincent Ubi, the Controller of Prisons, Lagos Command, Nigeria Prisons Service, disclosed this in an interview withnewsmen on Wednesday in Lagos. He said that the inmates from the Ikoyi Prisons School would sit for the Computer-Based Test mode conducted by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB).

More inmates are taking part in the examination this year, when compared to the 28 that sat for the examination in 2015. “The education of these inmates is of top priority to us. “Like I always tell them each time I go for routine checks in the prisons, their being incarceration does not mean all hopes are lost. “I usually remind them of the importance of education and the tremendous benefits that come with it, irrespective of the circumstance anyone might find him or herself.

“Now, with the UTME very much around the corner, we have been preparing these people fully in all the subjects and they have also improved on their level of computer literacy,’’ the controller said. He told pressmen that he had drafted his officers in the facilities to assist in teaching and preparing the inmates for the examination. Ubi commended the prison officials for their commitment toward ensuring improved performance of the inmates in the examination.

“I am proud of the commitment of my officers in the prison facilities in providing conducive teaching and learning environment. “The Prison Service has one of the highest numbers of educated personnel in terms of qualification. “So, we cash in on that by drafting some of them to serve as teachers in the facilities, aside other volunteer teachers that come from outside to assist.

“With all these in place, I will like to say that the performance of inmates has been very encouraging,’’ he said. Ubi said that all logistics required for the smooth conduct of the examination in the facility were in good shape and intact. According to the prison boss, more inmates are showing interest in furthering their education. He said that this was with the hope that when they eventually gain freedom, the inmates would be able to contribute their quota to the larger society.

Ubi said this was evident in the increased enrolment into schools in the facilities. The controller said the trend was not unconnected with the performance of their fellow inmates who had sat and performed well in the same examination. “Many of them are driven by the performance of their colleagues who have sat for the same examination and subsequently furthered their education at the National Open University of Nigeria located in the facilities.

“Some of the inmates from the NOUN have posted impressive performance at the end of their studies. “Of note is one of the inmates who graduated 2015 with first class, and is currently teaching other inmates in the prison facilities. “Such persons, if they are on life sentence, we often make a case to their respective state governments and their prerogative of mercy officer will take it from there to recommend such inmates for pardon.

“We have always assured the inmates of our maximum support in the area of their education and general welfare,’’ he said. In another interview, the Principal of Ikoyi Prison School, Mr Ibikunle Idris, said that 40 inmates were initially prepared for the UTME. He, however, said that because of intervention of justice, five of the prospective candidates, who were on the awaiting trial list, had been discharged and acquitted.

Enrolment In Poly, College Of Education On The increase – JAMB

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) on Monday said that the enrolment for Colleges of Education, Polytechnics and Monotechnics and Innovative Enterprise Institutions had improved greatly.



JAMB’s Head, Media and Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, said this in a statement he issued in Lagos on Monday.


It said that the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) had expanded the carrying capacity of the institutions and thereby, to a large extent, addressed the issue of admission access in the country.



According to the statement, the negative preference by most Nigerian candidates over these institutions of higher learning necessitated the need by the board to introduce a unified examination.


“Today, we are not there yet, but the enrolment for colleges of education, polytechnics, monotechnics and Innovative Enterprise Institutions has greatly improved.


Having said this, I want to say that we are worried by a recent interview granted by the Vice-Chancellor, University of Lagos, Prof. Rahmon Bello, where he allegedly blamed the Board for admission challenges in tertiary education.


The respected scholar also said that the board’s matriculation examination should be split into three, with the universities, polytechnics and colleges of education each having separate entrance examination.


We sincerely appreciate this concern over the challenges of admission, especially as it affects carrying capacity and the preferences of candidates for universities over other tiers of tertiary institutions.


However, the board would want the public to note that it was this same concern amongst others that led to the unification of the matriculation examination,’’ the statement said.



According to the statement, when the board was conducting UME for universities and MPCE for other institutions of higher learning, one of the major concerns of stakeholders was the negligible number of candidates sitting for the MPCE.


“For instance, when over a million candidates sit for the UME, less than 200,000 applied for the MPCE.


At the 2008 National Council of Education meeting, it was observed that the disparity in entrance examination and separate examination was partly responsible for this negligible enrolment.


The Prof. Dibu Ojerinde-led board was then mandated to fashion a way of addressing this challenge and ensure uniformity in entrance requirements.


It was to also look into the admissions and also to improve the patronage of these tiers and above all, ensure that teachers and technical education in the country get the best,’’ it said.



According to the statement, today, one of the challenges that has negatively affected the choice of university over others is the issue of the HND/B.Sc dichotomy.



It said that the board was appealing to all stakeholders to call on government to urgently address this issue, as it holds the key to resolving the preference of universities over other tertiary institutions in the country.



It said that when policies ran into stormy waters, there was the need to find a lasting solution by involving all stakeholders rather than jettison all its gains.


“What we should be looking at now if there are challenges of admission is to look for ways of improving on the policies and ensure that the today gains are sustained and improved upon.


One of the gains of the Unified Matriculation Examination by the board is the tremendous increase in the patronage for polytechnics, colleges of education and the Innovative Enterprises Institutions.


This is as against what was the situation before the unification used to be.


The board has not achieved a 100 per cent result due to other variables, but wishes to appeal to government to support this drive.


Government can achieve this by first removing the certificate dichotomy and placing of graduates of polytechnics and universities on the same scale in the civil service and private sector employee scheme, if practicable,’’ the statement said.



It noted that going back to separate examination would worsen the situation and return the country back to the starting stage.



The statement said that the situation where candidates who applied for placements into universities could not be admitted and as well could not take up admission opportunities in other institutions of higher learning would play up.



It said that that such a development would further place heavy financial burdens on the candidates, as they would want to sit for all the examinations to achieve the same result that the unified examination was currently giving them.


If all graduates of both universities and polytechnics are to be seen to be the same, then they must equally have the same treatment.


Our teachers too must also be the products of good competition,’’ it said.




NCC Donates Four CBT Centres To JAMB

Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has built and donated four Computer Based Test (CBT) centres to Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), a statement said.


The statement was issued by Mr Tony Ojobo, Director, Public Affairs of NCC in Lagos on Wednesday.


It credited the Acting Executive Vice-Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, as saying that the centres were meant to augment the board’s facilities for the smooth conduct of CBT.


Danbatta said the centres were located in Kano, Niger, Bayelsa and Oyo states and were equipped with computers, printers, other accessories and Internet connectivity.


”We have a minimum standard that we maintain for all our projects and there is no exception. Standards are necessary for projects to be appreciated.


“NCC is intervening not only in the provision of CBT for JAMB, but provision of equipment for tertiary institutions through the Advance Digital Appreciation Programme for Tertiary Institutions (ADAPTI).


“ADAPTI is aimed at bridging digital divide in tertiary institutions through the provision of computers and other ICT facilities to equip the lecturers and other experts in order to improve their ICT skills,” Danbatta said.


The statement said the Registrar of JAMB, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde, appreciated the gesture and asked NCC to build more centres for the examination.


Ojerinde said JAMB was also deploying its CBT centres in Digital Bridge Institute facilities in Abuja, Kano and Oshodi, Lagos State, for the examination.


He said the board had over 500 CBT centres nationwide.

“These centres are now being used for registration by potential candidates for the next Universal Tertiary Matriculation Examination instead of cyber cafes,” Ojerinde said.



JAMB To Begin Sale Of 2016 UTME Forms On Aug. 31

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says arrangement has been concluded for the sale of its 2016 application documents.

This is contained in a statement by the board’s Head of Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos.

According to the statement, the sales is to prepare candidates early for the 2016 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).

It said that candidates were urged to purchase the examination scratch cards from Zenith Bank,  Sky Bank and First Bank .

”The registration fee for the UTME is N5,000 and candidates are also to pay  N500 to obtain the textbook, The Last Days at Forcados High School’.

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Odeyemi Afis Olawale: EDUCATION Must Survive

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) may have retreated it position over the earlier introduced policy on admission which resulted into demonstrations from various quarter of the nation’s institutions. The policy generated uproar among stakeholders, prospective undergraduates and their parents, leading to several unpleasant reactions including protest and litigations. Odeyemi Afis Olawale examined the outcome of the event.

All roads lead to the University of Lagos (UNILAG), penultimate week as aggrieved parents and their children/wards seeking admission into the institution stormed the campus. The protesting parents accompanied by their prospective undergraduates lay siege at the UNILAG campus in disapproval of the school decision to bar the students from taking the post-Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), slated for 12 and 13th of August. The demonstration earmarked the parent’s dissatisfaction over the new JAMB policy which was bent on redirecting applicants from their school of most preferred choice.

In what had started as mere speculation making rounds in the early parts of Tuesday, spread swiftly like wild fire to other institutions in the country, as social media platforms were awash with various unverified stories which emanated from the exercise. At the UNILAG campus, the purported rumor turned true to the obvious eyes of applicants who having visited the school website to complete the screening test registration, were bolted from the blue. The anxious applicants met a bigger shock at the school website as they were promptly redirected to verify their good standings by providing individual JAMB application details for verification before proceeding with the final registration. Reports however revealed that most of the candidates were not shortlisted by jamb. The unusual development infuriated the helpless students and their aggrieved parents which subsequently led to the protest the day after.

Parents bemoaned such policy lacked fair judgment and infringes on their right to life, freedom of choice and individualism. “This is absolutely unacceptable, and a total breach of our right to choice. It is offensive to our sensibility and insensitive to the plight of the innocent students whose right to formal education is being denied and their hope and aspirations dashed away”, insisted, one of the parents.

The first sign that there was trouble in the air showed up in the early hours of Wednesday as protesters staged a large mass demonstration at the university, wielding placards together to vent their spleen on the institution. They blocked and barricaded the university gate and other adjoining roads leading to the campus, which brought academic activities to standstill. They chanted solidarity songs, and thereafter demanded the removal of Jamb Chief Registrar, Prof.

Jibu Ojerinde, as they accused him of working hand-in-glove with private institutions to launch what they termed ‘unfair policy’.

UNILAG was the front burner of protest among the list of 5 affected Nigeria institutions with highest number of applications. You will recall; Unilag recorded 62,125 applications as compared to University of Nigeria, Nsukka which attracted 66,788 applicants. Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka had 70,609 applications, leaving University of Benin, with 71,496 applications. It will key to note that the University of Ilorin had once again topped in the list of most preferred Nigeria universities with highest number of seekers totaling 107,488 applications.

When CAMPUS BEATS visited the institution, reports garnered shows that the sudden outburst at the UNILAG campus although peaceful, was partly because it coincided with the institution’s call for application for its 2015/2016 academic session post-UTME test.

Statistics revealed that out of the 32,000 candidates qualified for the screening test based on the 200 cut-off score adopted by the University of Lagos for all post-jamb applicants, only 9,000 candidates were short-listed and therefore eligible to participate in the test. Others were then asked to await jamb directives for transfer to other institutions. In reaction parents who had accompanied their children to the campus for the exercise expressed disappointment, they berated JAMB over their children’s exclusion from the list of shortlisted candidates.

Mosses Okafor, an engineer and parent, in a chat with campus correspondent, has said his brother who made UNILAG his first choice scored 255 in the JAMB-UTME examination but was met by shock and dissatisfaction at the reason both JAMB and the institution gave for the sudden change in the usual procedure. He said the policy is unpopular to the general public and lacked fairness to the plight of the masses. “At least we should have been notified well ahead of time instead of this sudden imposition,” he insisted.

Reports has it that JAMB during its 6th combined policy meeting of stakeholders of institutions which was attended by vice chancellors of universities, rectors of polytechnics and provosts of colleges of education had adopted 180 and 150 as the national benchmark for admission into universities, polytechnics and other non degree awarding institutions. JAMB thereby cautioned all tertiary institutions against flouting such decision, saying with effect from the current academic session, the board would sanction defaulters who defy the regulation.

Meanwhile, schools like UNILAG and four other universities had other ideas, they had refused to stick to the agreed upon benchmark and went ahead to impose their own cut-off marks. In addition, candidates who had scored below their own benchmark were barred from registering for the post-UTME test.

John Kikelomo another candidate who applied to UNILAG shared her opinion to CAMPUS BEATS, she was of the opinion that, JAMB should have sensitized the general public on its decision early enough instead of introducing a last minute policy even after it had earlier announced to the public that the cut-off mark for admissions into universities is 180 and 150 to non-degree awarding institutions. Other agitating parents saw a different ball to the game. They saw the whole exercise from a far broader perspective; a new form of political strategy heading towards personal gain.

A trader at the university who claimed to have two of her daughters applying to the institution believes JAMB registrar and his associates arrived at the decision without clear thoughts and consideration for public interest. She noted that: “It is only in Nigeria decisions paramount to general public interest is taking with impunity, with no due consultation to the people but with less concern to the plight of the masses. But on this one, we shall not agree until our interest is met”, she added.

CAMPUS BEATS can authoritatively reveal that stakeholders, including academics in the nation’s education sector sulk at the policy. Some nevertheless, believed the new policy has its positive and negative sides.

Also granted interview to CAMPUS BEATS correspondent, a source at the university, a senior lecturer of the department of International Law and Jurisprudence, UNILAG disclosed such policy on the part of JAMB could have been replaced with a more ideal one. The source revealed that JAMB also compounded issues by advising that candidates with lower cut-off marks apply for the placement in universities with insufficient applicants. “It is a shame that education standards are now so low as to compel JAMB to contemplate this unprecedented scheme. It is much more disgraceful that Nigerians are even debating this low standardization. I believe that if the national benchmark of 180 as claimed by JAMB was with the intention to create admission opportunities for candidates that are educationally disadvantaged or fill slots in less preferred universities, then it is high time it changed tack, enthrone meritocracy and ensured only the best students enters the nation’s universities.” This, he said should be the best approach at a time the rest of the world attaches much importance to quality education. The source added that: “The best response to such development is not to allow the system to be marooned in mediocrity but that a higher standard for Nigerians to strive to attain is, what is required.”

Speaking on the benefit of such policy, JAMB Registrar, Professor Dibu Ojerinde, had insisted the policy portends two benefits. First, It will be beneficial to “needy Universities” that is, universities with lower number of candidates than their capacities, as it will ensure more candidates to be admitted. On the other hand, candidates will have better chances for admission in the universities they are re-assigned to, contrary to the usual situation whereby

candidates would await admission in the universities of their first choices until the admission exercise closes and they forfeit admission in that session.

Also resulting from the imbroglio, some affected candidates had dragged JAMB and UNILAG to the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos over the new policy. The court, same day granted the application for judicial review of the decision to bar them from taking the UNILAG entrance examination. The applicants alleged that Ojerinde issued a directive stopping them from participating in the forthcoming post-UTME examinations, while also accusing Ojerinde of sending their names to other institutions they did not choose.

However, relief finally came the way of the students, resulting from many reactions and agitations from stakeholders which culminated into resting and outlawing the policy. The Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASSU), University of Ibadan chapter, Prof. Segun Ajiola alleged that investors in private universities were using JAMB to lure students to, and promote their schools. He claimed JAMB lost completely it relevance the moment universities began to decide the students they could admit through the post-UTME tests. Ajibola Insisted JAMB lacked the constitutional authority to decide which school a candidate would go, he maintained that it was sad that JAMB has suddenly become promoter of private universities by imposing unpopular policy on the preferences and choice of Nigerian youths. “JAMB lacks the power to change the rules of admission in the middle of the process after deceiving candidates to pick universities, polytechnics and colleges of education as options when it sold out forms to them. JAMB’s concept of ‘needy’ institutions needs deconstruction here. Needy universities are basically private universities in Nigeria that charge exorbitant fees with less than required manpower.”

What turned an abrupt and complete reversal of position, JAMB spokesperson Dr. Benjamin announced its decision to allow the candidates partake in the post-UTME test in their first choice institutions. In addition, he disclosed candidates can also do the post-UTME exercise in the institutions, particularly, universities which they have been posted to by JAMB. We hope this will help the candidates in their endeavor. Insisting that, the board by its decision was showing that it has the interest of Nigerians at heart.

Although, the JAMB policy may have been faced out, it will suffice to say that the uproar generated by the now outlawed policy shows that if the Nigeria education system must attain world standard, there must be a clear-cut and uniform standard adopted for the whole nation. Generally, educational standards are universal. Hence, if the Nigerian education sector must follow in the part of other developed nations of the world, then she must adhere strictly to these universal standards of schooling instead of standards being bent to suit students who are not eligible for university education. Such students should be encouraged to opt for polytechnics or colleges of education. The implication is that, if candidates who cannot score

above 180 got into the universities, these tertiary institutions would also lower their standards for them to cope with, thereby making the journey to the republic of mediocrity permanent. It is therefore pertinent if each state of the federation will invest massively in education, get qualified teachers to prepare their indigenes for national examinations like that of JAMB and pay for it citizens development. It is incumbent on government and it agencies at all levels to ensure that the level of education in the country is improved. Since future development of every nation is tied to its youths, government at all spheres must adopt the right investment strategy in education.


Tertiary Institutions Undermine JAMB By Conducting Post-UTME – NUT

Mr Gunsling Yarlings, the Plateau NUT Chairman, has said that tertiary institutions’ insistence on conducting post UTME was undermining JAMB’s function as a body expected to conduct the examinations to decide who should be admitted.

“The implication is that the board lacks the capacity to discharge its fucntions,” Yarlings told the News Agency of Nigeria in Jos on Thursday.
He said that JAMB’s UTME was enough to access candidates for admission into higher Institutions, and wondered why there should be other examinations after candidates had already been graded by the Board.

‘’Post UTME is tautology; it means the school authorities are undermining the capability of JAMB by conducting their own exams.

“ Teachers Registration council of Nigeria (TRCN), for instance, was established to determine the standards of knowledge and skills required to become registered teachers.

“NUT cannot come up with its set of rules to screen the skills required for teachers or discipline them because it clearly undermines the function of the TRCN and NUT is telling them that they are not capable of discharging their functions,’’ he said.

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FG Overrules JAMB On New Admission Policy

The Federal Government has overruled the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board on its new admission policy that recently sparked off protests in parts of the country.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mr. MacJohn Nwaobiala, disclosed this to State House correspondents on Tuesday, after briefing President Muhammadu Buhari of his ministry’s activities and challenges at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
JAMB had, at its 2015 Combined Policy Meeting, adopted a policy whereby candidates of universities with surplus applicants for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations are reassigned to other universities with lower number of applicants than their capacities.
Protest started at the University of Lagos when the institution’s authorities announced that only

candidates whose names were officially forwarded by JAMB are eligible to participate in this year’s UNILAG Post-UTME.

Nwaobiala told reporters that the decision was jointly taken at a stakeholders’ meeting that had parents and others in attendance.
He said because of the dust raised by the development, the Federal Government had commenced consultation with the aim of identifying where adjustments could be made.
He however said students that made the cut-off marks have been directed to go and write post-UME examinations in their schools of first choice since that was the bone of contention.
Nwaobiala said, “This JAMB thing has been there. As the policy making body, when these issues were raised, they raised in a stakeholders meeting. We normally have what we call the policy meeting. Everything about admission are discussed with parents and other stakeholders at the meeting.
“These are decisions that we collectively took. However, we have a listening hear. We have taken a lot of the issues raised into consideration and we are consulting to see the adjustments we can make here and there.
“The directive has been given. All the students that made the cut-off marks have been told to go and write post-UME examinations in their schools of first choice. After, they can go to their schools of second choice. That has been the bone of contention.”
On the threat by the West African Examinations Council to withhold the results of candidates in 19 states, who wrote the May/June 2015 WASSCE following unpaid examination fees by the state governments, Nwaobiala appealed to states to fulfil their promises.

Admission Cut Off Marks: SERAP Sues JAMB, UNILAG

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project(SERAP) has dragged the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board and the University of Lagos to court over “outrageous cut-off marks decisions”.

The organization is seeking an order stopping JAMB, UNILAG and others from implementing the decision. The suit number FHC/L/CS/1139/2015 filed today at the Federal High Court By Adetokunbo Mumuni on behalf of SERAP and three applicants affected by the cut-off marks decision, the Applicants contend that “the provisions of Section 5(1)(c)(iii) of the JAMB Act are very clear and unambiguous. The letter and spirit of the provisions is to ensure that the preferences of candidates in terms of the university they choose to attend are sacrosanct. Even a contrary or adverse decision by individual university cannot override decision made pursuant to the provisions of Section (5)1)(c)

The three other applicants are: Adeola Hammed Ayobami; Abass Ololade; andAbass Ajibola. The Respondents in the suit apart from JAMB and UNILAG are: the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice and the Permanent Secretary,Ministry of Education. The suit reads in part: “Given that the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other candidates across the country are children striving to pursue their education, it is argued that the interpretation of Section 5(1)(c)(iii)warrants an assessment of the principle of the best interests of the candidates affected and this principle should be taken as a primary consideration when different interests are being considered in order to reach a decision whether to change the preferences of the candidates. There should be a guarantee that the preferences of the candidates will be respected.” “If a legal provision such as Section 5(1)(c)(iii) is open to more than one interpretation, the interpretation which most effectively serves the child’s best interests should be chosen and that in this case will be to fully respect their preferences of universities. The failure of the Respondents to consider the possible negative impact of the decision on the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other

candidates across the country amounts to a breach of Section 5(1)(c)(iii) of the JAMB Act.” “In Meyer v Nebraska, the court held that human dignity denotes the right of the individual to acquire knowledge, engage in the common occupations of life, marry, establish a home and generally enjoy those privileges long recognized as essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness. This means that several candidates across the country are entitled to choose appropriate academic environment they consider conductive, to, in the words of the court in the Meyer case just cited, “acquire knowledge”. Denying them this fundamental right amounts to a blatant violation of Section 34 of the 1999 Constitution and Section 5 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.” “The Applicants urged the court “to that the decision by the Respondents Individually and/or collectively violates the provisions of the Constitution in that it has caused several candidates across the country unnecessary mental suffering, severe enough to be considered inhumane treatment.” “As the court correctly said in R. v Devon CC ex p. George “… a decision that elicits the exclamation ‘my goodness, that is certainly wrong!’” Therefore, the decision by JAMB, UNILAG and others should receive the ‘most anxious scrutiny’ of the courts because the decision is so outrageous and in its defiance of logic or of accepted moral standards that no sensible person who had applied his mind to the issue at stake could have arrived at it.” “Recognising a right to dignity is an acknowledgement of the intrinsic worth of human beings: human beings are entitled to be treated as worthy of respect and concern. The Applicants further submits that where treatment humiliates or debases an individual showing a lack of respect for, or diminishing, his or her human dignity or arouses feelings of fear, anguish, as it is the case here, the Honorable

Court should hold that a violation of constitutional rights have occurred.” “The Applicants submits that the decision by the Respondent to increase the cut-off point as narrated above is arbitrary, unreasonable, unfair and unjust having being made without any consultation whatsoever and after the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other candidates have been made to believe that the cut-off point would be 180. We further submit that the increase of the cut-off point imposes excessive burdens on the candidates concerned.” “The Respondents in reaching their decision to increase the cut-off points have not struck a proper balance between competing interests, and the decision is therefore unreasonable as it has brought considerable damage and suffering to the candidates across the country, and we urge the Honorable Court to rule.” The Organization is seeking the following reliefs: A DECLARATION that the decision by the Respondents individually and/or

collectively to increase the cut-off point to 250 after stating publicly that it would be 180 interferes with the choices and preferences of the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other candidates across the country and therefore directly violates Section 5(1)(c)(iii) of the JAMB Act Cap 193 of the Laws of the Federation DECLARATION that the cut-off point of 180 set by the 1st Respondent cannot be varied by any university in the country including the 4th Respondent herein was to do so would offend the provisions of Section 5(1)(c)(iii) of the JAMB Act Cap 193 of the Laws of the Federation A DECLARATION that the decision by the Respondents individually and/or collectively to increase the cut-off point to 250 after stating publicly that it would be 180 interferes with the choices and preferences of the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other candidates across the country and therefore directly violates Sections 34 and 39 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended)which

respectively guarantee to everyone the right to the dignity of human person and the right to receive and impart ideas A DECLARATION that the decision by the Respondents individually and/or collectively to increase the cut-off point to 250 after stating publicly that it would be 180 interferes with the choices and preferences of the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other candidates across the country and therefore directly violates Articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights as contained in the Laws of the Federation A DECLARATION that the decision by the Respondents individually and/or collectively to increase the cut-off point to 250 after stating publicly that it would be 180 interferes with the choices and preferences of the 2nd-4th Applicants and several other candidates across the country and therefore unreasonable, unfair and unjust as it failed to take into account the best interest of the Applicants and several

other candidates, as children AN ORDER directing the Respondents individually and/or collectively to reverse the decision to increase the cut-off point to 250 after stating publicly that it would be 180 and to fully and effectively implement the publicly announced 180 cut-off point AN ORDER restraining the Respondents individually and/or collectively from going ahead to implement the decision to increase the cut-off point to 250 instead of the publicly announced 180 cut-off point FURTHER OR OTHER RELIEFS as the Honorable Court deems fit in the circumstance No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit. Signed Adetokunbo Mumuni SERAP executive director Lagos, Nigeria

Controversial Cut-Off Mark: What Candidates Should Do – JAMB

Against the backdrop of controversy trailing move by the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) to post students rejected by
some universities to other schools, on the account of increased cut-off mark, the apex examination body has stated affected candidates
should check its website on Friday, August 5, 2015 to know the schools they are posted to.

Reacting to Wednesday’s protest by candidates billed to participate in UNILAG’s 2015/2016 post-Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination
(post-UTME), JAMB spokesman, Mr. Fabian Benjamin told Vanguard that the Board has entered into an agreement with the school to post the rejected students to other schools in Lagos environs.

According to Benjamin, “Admission is not the way people think. We have Merit, Catchment and closeness to a state. Those are the criteria we
are following to arrive at that list we sent to UNILAG. It’s not about the cut off point, there other considerations.

“UNILAG has only 9000 capacity in this year’s admission exercise and that is why we are trying to push the others to other universities.
They will not understand we are trying to send them to schools that will admit them because UNILAG can only take 9000 candidates. But the
students are not being patient with us to get this information across to them.”

He added that “We sympathise with them but wish to state categorically that the national cut-off point is just the minimum expectation that
each candidate desirous of university admission should have. However, universities are at liberty to go higher than 180, depending on their
peculiarities and the performance of candidates who chose them.

“For instance, if over 10,000 candidates who made UNILAG their first choice scored 250 and above, it will be difficult for them to go lower than 250 when they are to admit only about 9000. I wish to state that a time will come when some universities will go up to 300 as their
cut-off mark, depending on the performance.”

JAMB’s image-maker further explained that because of the development, the board decided that some of the candidates who chose such
institutions but fall below their cut-off marks should not miss out, hence the need to send them to other schools

JAMB Pass Mark: A Leeway For Complacency By Ololade Ajekigbe

I received the news about the decision of the Joint Admission And Matriculation Board (JAMB) to reduce the cut-off mark for candidates seeking admission into Nigerian Universities for degree programmes in the 2015/2016 academic session from 200 to 180 out of a possible 400 marks with some measure of puzzlement and amazement. I tried to find out what could have informed such a decision but could not really get any plausible explanation from all the news I read or heard. What is certain is that from October this year or thereabout when the next academic session would commence, schools are required to implement the new rule with regard to the admission of students. One can only assume that the officials of JAMB were convinced that they were taking the right step to help majority of University hopefuls whose hopes are dashed perennially having failed to make the previous pass mark of 200. I unequivocally disagree with this point of view. In fact I believe the education sector has just suffered a setback.
The increase in the failure rate in both the JAMB and WAEC examinations over the years most certainly calls for concern as well as a long lasting solution. An analysis of the results of the 2014 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) shows that out of the 990,179 candidates who applied for the Pencil-Paper Test (PPT), 828,296 of them scored less than 200 which translates to about 83 percent failure rate! The 2013 examinations were even worse as they were marred by widespread cheating in many centers. Fake answers were distributed to desperate candidates by scammers. Teachers, invigilators and even parents assisted candidates to cheat thereby resulting in mass failure, hence the introduction of the Computer Based Test, CBT in the 2015 examinations which has so far reportedly helped to reduce the incidence of examination fraud.
However, when a gathering of Professors and “learned fellows” adjudge that the only way to better the lot of prospective undergraduates is by scaling down the pass mark into higher institutions, one cannot help but wonder what they hope to achieve and if they stopped to consider the long term implication of their decision. The Nigerian education system is in troubled waters no doubt, but lowering standards in the name of increasing candidates’ chances gaining admission into higher institutions is not the way to go in reviving an ailing sector. The resolution reached may result in more candidates making the cut-off mark and eventually securing admission into a higher institution of learning, but it will also mean that we are encouraging mediocrity and a lassez-faire attitude to education in our future leaders.
Generally, failure rate in schools and national examinations are not as a result of tougher examination questions, rather it is an aftermath of the poor quality of education which has been on a steady decline through the years. This should not surprise anyone who is domiciled in these climes. Our undergraduates spend more time at home than in school due to incessant lecturer’s strikes. Poor parenting and guidance, population explosion, indiscipline and inadequate funding in particular are all factors militating against the standard of education in Nigeria to the extent that the highest ranked University in Nigeria occupies an unacceptable eighth position on the African continent.
Today, we have Teachers and Lecturers who have lost the zeal to impact knowledge in the wards entrusted to them but rather are more interested in extorting students through the sale of compulsory handouts and textbooks. This has in turn resulted in our Universities and Polytechnics churning out half-baked graduates in the mould of Mechanical engineers who cannot repair their own cars when it develops a fault and would rather patronise the road side mechanic who never passed through the wall of a school, Agricultural science graduates who cannot so much as cultivate maize all because somewhere along the line we stopped paying the required attention to a highly sensitive sector.
The decision of JAMB passes only one message across- We would rather lower the standards to accommodate mediocrity than tackle the root cause of the problem and achieve excellence. Already, the crop of young people we have now are more interested in the virtual world of the social media than any activity that may involve critical thinking or studying. It is not uncommon to come across high school leavers, undergraduates and even graduates of reputable Universities who cannot string a correct sentence together either in oral or written English.
While I was serving, I remember being approached by a fellow youth corp member who asked me what “Maiden name” meant. We were in a banking hall where we had been given a form to fill as part of the requirements for opening an account where our monthly allowance was to be paid when she came across the field which required ones mother’s maiden name to be filled in and she had absolutely no idea what it meant. I was taken aback that a graduate of a University had never heard or come across the term and wondered how she scaled through school. Now, that’s only one of several examples. I have since ceased to be amazed at any disappointing or below par display by any supposed graduate having come across many others.
By reducing the pass mark, JAMB is invariably giving a carte blanche for laziness and complacency. How are candidates supposed to be motivated to give their best when we are saying that a 45 percent pass mark is good enough to gain entry into the highest level of the education system? If candidates keep failing, do we continue to lower the standard? At a time when the nation is supposed to be going through some positive changes in various sectors of the economy, the education sector being one of the key sectors that will ultimately define our future as a country surely shouldn’t be left out. Officials of the Ministry of Education and by extension JAMB should be more proactive about putting pressure on the government of the day to increase the percentage of the budget allocation to education in the 2016 fiscal year with a view to providing adequate equipment and infrastructure in schools, as well as ensure that lecturers are well paid, so that the incidence of strike actions can be a thing of the past rather than choose the easy (but on the long run costly) way out.
Developed economies like the USA, China, Germany and Japan are driven by both prudent economic policies as well as technological innovations and inventions which their students are an integral part of. Students are supposed to be taught to be solution providers and not just consumers. This should be Nigeria’s goal if we intend to experience an upward mobility from our perpetual ranking as a third world country anytime soon.

Ololade Ajekigbe

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of nor its associates

JAMB To Determine Admissions Cut-Off Marks July 14

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says it will hold its 2015 Policy meeting on July 14 to determine cut-off marks for admission of candidates into tertiary institutions.

The board said it has concluded all arrangements to commence the process of the 2015 admissions.

Speaking to journalists Thursday, JAMB’s spokesperson, Benjamin Fabian, said the 2015 Policy Meeting, where the cut-off points for admissions are usually decided at, has been fixed for 14th July, 2015.

He said the cut-off point will be chosen after extensive deliberations with Vice-Chancellors of Universities, Provost of Colleges of Education and Rectors of Polytechnics, Monotechnics, Innovative Enterprise Institutions and other stakeholders.

Mr. Fabian said the exercise is interesting because of the success witnessed with the first full-blown Computer Based Test.

“The exercise has proved that our education system still has some hope. Don’t forget that in any educational system, world over, the examination process makes the difference,” he said.

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