Is JAMB a money making venture or an examination body?
Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, Registrar, Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), has said no fewer than 200 million candidates are expected to register for this year’s Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME). Prof. Oloyede declared that the examination body returned N7.8 billion to the Federal Government coffers from the proceeds of examination forms sold in 2017.
Similarly in 2017, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), revealed that there is no guarantee that one million out of the 1.7 million candidates who sat for the UTME will gain admission into universities for the 2017/2018 academic year. Eventually, only about 500,000 were admitted last year.
Also, we should not forget in a hurry that JAMB, reduced the cut-off mark to 120 last year all in a bid to have more people get admission beyond their Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (SSCE).
However, it is obvious that the antecedents of this newly-induced score was all a gimmick, owing to the fact that there is a fixed number of candidates who can get admission into schools. It was just last year that universities were able to fight their way to get Post-UTME back to scrutinize the candidates.
In all these, it is clear that the examination body is a money-making venture that is exploiting the poor and middle class. Yes, these monies are brought to the coffers of the government but should it be at the expense of families who can barely afford three square meals?
We should also remember that the whole exercise is not a fair playing field for candidates. Some of these candidates who are expected to take the exams on a computer have never seen or had access to computers. How would they pass?
The best way to address the issue is for JAMB certificates to be used beyond one year like it was in the past. This would give more candidates the opportunity to seek admission as many times as possible. We can also put a peg on the number of years as well.
Through this approach, JAMB would be able to focus on new candidates and those who did not meet the cut-off marks.
Young candidates would in turn be better prepared for the exams knowing that they can use it more than once to seek admission. Parents also can breathe a sigh of relief as well.
The bottom line is this; JAMB should stop exploiting the masses.
Let’s know your thoughts on this issue! Your opinion counts!
Feature Image: Guzeart Photography