By Chinyere Nwachukwu/Lagos
The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) may conduct a second 2021 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination(UTME) for candidates with genuine registration challenges.
The Registrar of the board, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, made the disclosure on Wednesday in Lagos while monitoring profiling of candidates with 2021 UTME registration challenges.
“So far, we have just 17, 758 candidates with challenges that had been profiled, nationwide.
“At the end of the entire exercise, we may have to conduct another examination for those with genuine cases after the main UTME slated for June 19 to July 3,” he said.
He reiterated the board’s commitment to ensuring that every Nigerian child desirous of tertiary education would be given an equal opportunity.
“Since I came here this morning and interacted with candidates, I have discovered that most of them are largely unserious and are basically the cause of most of their challenges.
“We keep hearing flimsy excuses such as my lesson teacher used his phone to generate the profile code, our tutorial centre helped us to register and I was not in town.
“Other reasons advanced are: I used my mother’s NIN to generate my profile code, my mummy did the registration for me,” he said.
According to the registrar, some candidates were honest enough to say they did not have money to procure UTME form.
“We have also seen cases where rather than send their NIN to 55019, candidates sent it to 55012, while others sent the same command with post paid phones rather than pre-paid,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that over 500,000 candidates had claimed they were unable to register for the examination within the given time frame – before May 15. JAMB later extended the registration till May 29.
The candidates cited inability to generate a profile code and difficulty in obtaining the National Identification Number (NIN).
The board had insisted that no candidate would be allowed to sit for the examination without providing the NIN.
Following the challenges, the board allowed a two-week window for the affected people to lodge their complaints at its offices or registration centres and get help.
Addressing journalists later, Oloyede called on state ministries of education to regulate activities of tutorial centres as a strategy to save the education sector from collapse.
Oloyede said that activities of some tutorial centres remained a hindrance to efforts at sanitising the country’s education system.
According to him, tutorial centres are a haven for examination malpractice.
Oloyede said that some tutorial centres held the system to ransom with ungodly activities.
He said that many operators of the centres were school dropouts operating from dilapidated, abandoned and uncompleted structures.
He regretted that some parents were patronising them with delight.
“These people are just introducing these candidates to how to beat the system, how to make sure that they get questions, particularly fake questions, because they cannot get JAMB questions,” he said.
The registrar said that parents must learn to allow their children and wards to go through the normal process of learning for them to be psychologically mature for tertiary education.
“Another major challenge threatening the system is intruding parents.
“They are intruders, who will not allow these children to think rightly and do things on their own but want to hurriedly push them into primary, secondary and tertiary schools at very tender ages.
“That is why many of them are prone and exposed to so many mistakes.
“In order to show the nation that the problem of registration is not what a section of the media is painting it to be, we came up with this initiative of asking all candidates with genuine excuses to visit our offices nationwide,” he said
Oloyede said that through the process JAMB discovered that some candidates went as far as using their bank verification numbers in a bid to get their profile codes rather than the NIN.