THE ongoing 2018 Senior School Certificate Examination, SSCE conducted by the National Examination Council has been greeted with criticism for question paper leakages and irregularities. From the e-registration to the supervision of the examination, it could best be described as a shadow of its past, said some of our respondents.
According to our investigations, before the commencement of each examination, many students and teachers were already in possession of the question papers and the answer scripts. The leakages of the question papers were more on subjects such as English Language, Chemistry, Literature in English and Government.
On one of the prominent websites, www.myedujobnews.net, candidates were promised direct answers on their phones 30 minutes before the commencement of examinations. The website stated, “subscribers will get link to where answers are posted online, receive confirmation text in the night after payment. We will send answers to candidates’ direct mobile phones first before linking subscribers to the website. No more opening of answer page for public view.”
Our source said that a candidate pays between N8,000 and N10,000 for the leaked questions and answers. For confirmation, below is an extract of the leaked NECO English Essay already answered as received from a concerned teacher.
1) A cousin of yours in SS2 is discovered to be pregnant and her father has threatened to send her out of the house. Write a letter to pacify the father and suggest what you think can be done to salvage the situation.
2) Write an article suitable for publication in a national daily on the plight of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Nigeria. Suggest how to rehabilitate them.
3) The literary and debating society of your school is organising a debate on the topic: Pen robbery is worse than armed robbery. Write your argument for or against the motion.
4) Write a story that perfectly illustrates the saying: To err is human, to forgive is divine.”
(4) The brother who has squandered his inheritance was being given red-carpet treatment upon his return, while he, who had toiled faithfully for his father had nothing to show for it. The world needs more leaders with the mentality of the boy’s father. He knew that his son had done wrong but hoped that the boy would return one day. He prepared for his return. There was a fattened calf and a robe waiting. The boy must have been stinking like a pig from his close association with the animals; that did not matter to his father. Instead of asking him to account for the wealth he had entrusted, the father welcomed him home.
On his part, the boy knew that he had done wrong. Long before he started the journey home, he thought of the apology he would give to his father for all the things he had done wrongly. He was also prepared to make amends. The boy also expected to be placed in a lower position than he had been in. One of the lessons here is that of taking personal responsibility for our actions. Most people will look for excuses for their mistakes. It is crucial to carry out an honest self-evaluation and decide what went wrong and how you will make amends for it.
Then there is the other brother who had worked for his father without having been given anything for his work. Don’t we have such people in organisations? They are people who wonder when they will be recognised for their work. The father said wisely that everything that was in the farm belonged to the boy. All of us should work with the mentality of an owner, and not of a worker.
Organisations are about people, and people are known to make mistakes. Some people are entrusted with huge responsibilities, and when they make a mistake, there are several people waiting to bring them down. I challenge you to look for the best in others, to anticipate that they will turn out alright and to rejoice when people try to make amends for the wrongs they have done. After all, to err is human: to forgive is divine.” ”
Students were not even sure whether the answers were correct, before they started copying. A teacher, who does not want his name in print because of his job said he was already in possession of the question papers and the answers before the exams started. According to him, the leaked question papers were already in public domain long before the exams began.
On irregularities in registration, a candidate, Olalekan Kuye in Ondo State, said he had registered and done the NECO fingerprint few months back, only to be called for another data capture and fingerprint during the examination. He said: “I don’t know why NECO would call me for another registration and fingerprints that I did months ago. When I did my registration and fingerprints, it was successful, why a repeat of it when we have written about two papers?”
Also Olawale Akeju from Gladys School in Lagos had the same experience as he was asked to come for biometric after he had done four papers. He said: “I was informed by a teacher in our school who is charge of the examination that NECO official needed me to come for my biometric which done at cybercafe.” Moreover, reports revealed that many candidates across the states did e-registration twice. While examinations were ongoing, NECO authorities were still requesting candidates who had registered months ago to repeat the same exercise.