The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, has finally agreed to reschedule examination for candidates who missed the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, due to the relocation of centres by the board.
Following the board’s relocation of 59,000 candidates in 15 states because of problems in some of the centres which cost them the exam, the affected candidates had carried out series of protests in some states of the country against the examination body.
But speaking at a press conference in Abuja yesterday, the Registrar of the board, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde assured that candidates who had system failure during the examination would retake it, if the board finds their complaint to be genuine.
According to him, “We relocated candidates where the board had challenges. The board is looking at some of the issues raised during the examination, but most of the excuses raised by candidates are flimsy.
“We relocated about 59, 000 candidates due to the problems in various centres which vary from town to town. There are about 59,000 of them spread across 15 states of the federation.
“Those that were relocated never suffered any setback or inconvenience. For all these two sets of people, I want to apologise sincerely for what happened to them, but we are going to put on a redress for those whose relocation affected them in missing their examination.”
Stressing that the new development does not affect candidates who missed the examination deliberately or failed in the examination, he said among the 1,546,633 candidates who sat for the 2016 UTME, 145, 704 had issues of multiple results which have been resolved by the board.
Prof. Ojerinde added that 23, 577 candidates were absent on the day of the examination.
His words, “Let me use this opportunity to offer explanation on the issue of the much-publicized two results.
The process of our marking involves transformation and other qualitative programming. In the process of these configurations, we had a little challenge which we quickly corrected and ensured that this never happened in subsequent results.
This challenge was only associated with the candidates that sat for this examination on Saturday, 27, and some candidates of Monday, 29 February, 2016.”
Ojerinde continued that the board found out that some of the over 500 centres used for the CBT were compromised by the operators, revealing that one of its centres in Uromi, Edo State was invaded by mercenaries during the examination.
While accusing the education consultants for mobilizing candidates to protest against the conduct of the examination by the board, he maintained that the quality of the centres used for UTME would not be compromised.
“In our quest to have adequate and effective centres for the exercise, we approved over 500 centres, but unfortunately, some of the centre operators were not sincere in proving us with the true position of their facilities.
“They hired equipment during the period of accreditation and other necessary apparatus and on the examination day, they were found wanting. This led to relocation or rescheduling of candidates from some of them to more suitable centres.”
Ojerinde, who insisted that Nigeria was ready for Computer-Based Test, CBT examination, explained that reverting to the Paper and Pencil Test, PPT, as directed by the House of Representatives would amount to lack of progress.
He assured that the CBT would be improved upon.
“Even the physically challenged are taking the CBT examination. One of the blind candidates scored 286, so why should others complain?
“Going back to the Paper and Pencil Test will amount to taking one step forward and two steps backwards,” the JAMB boss stated.