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Observers pick holes in UTME maiden examination

By Dayo Adesulu
The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) which now function as Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), for the first time since inception, held last Saturday its joint  examination for students seeking admissions into universities, mono-technics, polytechnics and colleges of education in Nigeria.

It was gathered from JAMB that a total of 1,375,642 candidates registered for the recent examination as against 1,525,338 that registered from all tertiary institutions in 2009.

Monitoring teams from the madia and outside the media pick holes in the irregularities that characterised  some of the 2,705 centres.

Monitoring the examination in some centres at Ikoyi on Saturday, it was discovered that, about a quarter of the total students who registered for the examination had the problem of double electronics registration number which resulted into students quarrelling over seats and examination numbers.

Some UTME candidates destitute of what to write in the recent exam.

Speaking with Vanguard Education Weekly, Ajoke Bakare, a JAMB candidate while lamenting her situation said that, on getting to her centre, she discovered that somebody else was sitting on her seat because she had same e-registration number with the candidate.

According to Mr Ayotunde Ajayi, Chief Examiner at Akinde Dahunsi Memorial High School, Ilado and Dahunsi Senior High School,  had the problem of same number given to two different candidates. He added that if not rectified such students will have problem when they want to check their results. “To proffer solution to it, we encouraged the affected students to maintain their given numbers,” he said

It was the same situation at Aunty Ayo Grammar School centre where  Mr Segun Ariba, the supervisor, said, “I contended with about forty candidates having problems of registration slips as they were given different passports and names.”

On enquiry from some affected students, he discovered that the students who had the double electronics registration were those that registered from their JAMB coaching classes. Segun said that one of the students who confided in him said she gave forty thousand naira to her coaching teacher to assist in registering  her online.

Segun however faulted UTME on allotting unregistered subjects to candidates who requested for different subjects. To correct it, he said that UTME has provided extra subject questions to the affected candidates and also a master register to cross check and correct anomalies.

UTME candidates however have been assured by JAMB that the entire  results of a centre will not be cancelled because of the offence of few who misbehaved, adding that, individual, will be punished accordingly.

Explaining further, Ayotomi asserted that, the major reason why students results will not be cancel randomly in any centre was due to the codes for various offences of examination conduct that is put in place by UTME to assess each candidate base on their behaviour during the period of the examination. Thus, according to him,  there are codes and marks for lateness, malpractice, talking and so on and so forth.

Nevertheless, JAMB must be commended for the security put in place to check examination malpractices as there were no avenue for malpractice during the examination due to tight security from para-military, JAMB officials and the Press.

As a result of this tight security, students were seen in various examination centres either bitting their pencils with their teeth or gazing at their question papers endlessly writing nothing.

The scenario depicts the decadence in the reading and studying culture of our students. In any examination where they do not have access to cheat the resultant effect is mass failure.


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