Just this Morning Nigeria Number Online News portal www.Vanguardngr.com published an article about the scrapping of Jamb and Neco Examination board, Jamb will stay , Read as below:
Initially, Nigerian universities, indeed tertiary institutions were conducting entrance
examinations for candidates seeking admission until 1978 when the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) was established by Decree (Act) which subsequently was amended in 1989 and 1993.
Jamb was empowered to be responsible for the:
*general control over the conduct of matriculation examinations into all universities, polytechnics and colleges of education;
*appointment of examiners, moderators, invigilators, members of subject panels and committees and other persons with respect to matriculation examinations;
*placement of suitable qualified candidates in the tertiary institutions in collaboration with those institutions.
Until very recently, JAMB was conducting separate entrance examinations into Degree awarding institutions known as the Universities Matriculation Examination (UME) and Polytechnic/Colleges of Education (PCE) Matriculation Examination.
But now these examinations have been collapsed into one called Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) whereby candidates are required to choose two universities, two polytechnics and two colleges of education of their choice and sit for the examination once. This reform was meant to liberalise admission opportunity so that a candidate who cannot be admitted into a university, can either get admission into a polytechnic or college of education and so not likely to lose out entirely. Yet majority of candidates preferred university education to the detriment of polytechnic, college of education and vocational studies.
Even before this innovation, there was introduction of Post-UME or Post-UTME to further screen candidates who obtained 200 and above for specifically university admission so as to check cheating or malpractice by candidates that often scored 300 and above in JAMB only to drop out of the university because they lacked academic competence to cope with university education. Therefore, Post-JAMB or Post-UTME was like sifting the chaff from the wheat and get the best and most competent candidates. JAMB results were not reliable enough due to various malpractices hence universities were allowed to conduct weeding tests for those seeking admissions into them.
Yet the process cannot be said to be perfect nor free of corrupt tendencies and malpractice because other considerations like federal character, quota system, catchment areas and even outright gratification make university admission going only to the privileged, highest bidders. The Post-UTME, conducted by individual universities seemed to have been abused and compromised by the powers-that-be in these universities where the admissions are eventually decided.
With the report on the reform of government agencies and ministries submitted by Mr. Steve Oronsaye, former Head of Federal Civil Service who chaired a panel to look into rationalization of agencies in order to reduce cost of governance, it recommended abolition of 38 agencies, merger of 52 and reversal of 14 to departments in ministries.
Among the casualties were the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) and National Examinations Council (NECO) domiciled in the Federal Ministry Education.
The Oronsaye panel recommended that JAMB be divested of the powers to conduct matriculation examinations into tertiary institutions while universities should be allowed to conduct their own entrance examinations.
According to the recommendations, as widely reported in the media, although JAMB would not be scrapped, it would be an administrative structure to set standards for minimum requirements on how universities in the country would conduct entrance examinations.
On the other hand, the panel recommended the scrapping of National Examinations Council (NECO) and its infrastructure merged with that of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) which will also take over the structures of NECO across the country. If accepted by government, WAEC would then conduct two external examinations – one in January and another in November for external (private) candidates, while still going ahead with the internal examinations for secondary school students.
Saturday Vanguard talked with some of the stakeholders in the university system on the fate of JAMB as the nation awaits Federal Government’s White Paper/decision as regards Oronsaye panel report.
JAMB should remain clearing house
Professor Isaac A. Adeyemi, Vice Chancellor, Bells University of Technology, Ota, Ogun State, expressed what he called his “personal opinion”on divesting JAMB of the powers to conduct matriculation examinations into tertiary institutions.
What is your response to the recommendation that JAMB hands off conducting matriculation examination?
In my own personal opinion, I will like JAMB to remain as the body conducting entrance examinations into the universities. The stand of the committee of Vice Chancellors is made known to the nation. If you ask me, I want universities to still conduct matriculation examinations for candidates seeking admission. Let JAMB continue to do so. It should remain as the clearing house. I prefer it to to be like that.
Another vice chancellor of a state-owned university, Professor Tolu Odugbemi responded thus to Saturday Vanguard: I am not going to comment on the issue because government has not taken a decision yet.
Ït’s just speculation as at now, needless to say anything on it, even as the Minister of State for Education had commented on the issue which is still pending and awaiting decision of government.”
Immediate Past National President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, (ASUU), Professor Ukachukwu Awuzie said, in his own response to whether or not JAMB test candidates for admission said “I believe JAMB should continue to conduct matriculation examinations. If universities do it, they won’t achieve desired result. The examination should continue to be conducted by JAMB, as universities do not have the capacity to do so. Only JAMB can do that successfully considering the interest of candidates inside this country and those outside Nigeria writing the examination.”
Dr. Kabir Olusegun Akinyemi, erstwhile chairman, LASU-ASUU decried the recommendation to rid JAMB of its legal mandate to conduct matriculation examination. He blamed inconsistent policy for this development. This was his response on the issue.
Policy inconsistency, bane of our education system
I don’t know exactly, why government will want JAMB canceled. One of the problems of Nigeria’s education system is inconsistency of policy. At the end of the day, it will bounce back. The so-called Post-UTME has helped a lot. JAMB conducting matriculation examinations is a way to harmonise the university system.
Apart from curriculum harmonisation in the university system, matriculation examination for admission, is generally for all and sundry. If universities are allowed to conduct entrance examinations by themselves some will be difficult and tough, charge high examination fees while others will be very simple and easy, like a kangaroo exam, for universities looking for students. So there’s need to harmonsie the policy.
What about qualification?
It is true to have basic qualification and the requisite grades in WAEC and NECO in order to sit for entrance examinations. But we know there are some students with several As in WAEC or NECO who are no where to be found when it comes to the entrance examination.
How can JAMB be strengthened?
I think JAMB cannot be phased out. We need statistics to know how many candidates are admitted in the system, the number of those yet to be admitted. JAMB should be standardised, based on NUC standards. NUC can come into the admission process and help to standardise it.
Content Culled From vanguardngr.com