BY Ben Agande

Abuja—Candidates who cheat during examinations conducted by the West African Examinations Council, WAEC, now risk a five-year jail term under an amendment to the 2004 WAEC Act being proposed by Federal Government.

Under the proposed amendment, examination malpractice will fetch five year jail term for offenders or the option of N200,000 fine or both.

Minister of Education, Professor Ruqayyatu Rufa’i, said the 2004 Act, to which an amendment is being sought, stated that WAEC is empowered to take disciplinary action against those that have committed both the offences and penalties for illegally using examination papers and leakage of examination papers, etc.

The section reads in part: “Such candidate shall not take or be allowed to take or continue the examination.

“In addition, he shall be prohibited from taking any examination held or conducted by or on behalf of the Council for a period of two years immediately following upon such contraventions.

“And if a candidate aforesaid has already taken any papers at the examination, his result therefrom shall be cancelled.”

In addition, the candidate may be prosecuted and if found guilty shall be “liable on conviction to a fine of N2,000 or imprisonment for a term of five years or to both such fine and imprisonment.”

Section 20 (2) reads: “The penalties contained in this sub-section (a) may be imposed whether or not a prosecution for an offence under Sections 20 or 21 of this Act has been brought or is being conducted or contemplated and (b) shall be in addition to such other penalties as a court may impose upon conviction for an offence under the aforesaid Sections 20 or 21.”


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