Scrap JAMB Now! – Stakeholders Berates Education Minister. Following the ongoing controversies generated since Education Minister, Mallam Adamu Adamu announced the scrapping of post-UTME tests organised by higher institutions, stakeholders, especially university administrators and lecturers have demanded the complete overhaul of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB). The stakeholders have also called for the full restoration of autonomy to the universities, arguing that the buck of the admission process should end on the table of each university.
Deputy Director, Distance Learning Centre, University of Ibadan, Professor Oyesoji Aremu in his reaction described the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board and the Federal Ministry of Education as institutions which lack policy direction on the Nigerian education sector.
In his words: “JAMB and the Federal Ministry of Education seem not to understand what they exactly want for education in Nigeria in respect of candidates seeking admission. Within a spate of a month, JAMB has ‘foisted’ two admission policies on the country.” He lamented that while the initial cancellation of Post-UTME is generating controversy and still being debated, the body came out with the latest one, Point System Option. He pointed out that few weeks ago, JAMB through the Minister of Education, ‘decreed’ that money must not be charged by universities for pre-admission exercise, while the latest development stated that universities would charge fee for screening at the end of the process of admission. ‘’What do we call that? Confusion!”
Also speaking on the issue, UNILAG-ASUU Chairman, Dr Laja Odukoya said that with the actions and policies taken so far, the Minister of Education has deepened the confusion he created.
He said: ‘‘Clearly the minister is merely deepening the confusion he has created based on ill-conceived policy and lack of courage to do what is right.” He reiterated that the point system which he now introduced was in use at the University of Ibadan and jettisoned by UI at the introduction of post-UTME. He posited that the minister by his latest policy somersault has admitted that JAMB cannot be trusted with university admission. He said: “The minister’s position is sadly a historical as it ignores factors that brought about post-UTME in the first instance. “With the new arrangement, candidates of miracle centres who brought their scores in WASCE, NECO and UTME are advantaged over hard-working, honest and diligent students. ‘’Verifiable data from universities since the commencement of post-UTME as proof that those admitted through Post-UTME are academically better given the reduced drop-out rate as a consequence of poor academic performance after the first year in the university.
‘’The minister should have the courage to do the right thing. JAMB has failed. It should be scrapped. Universities should be given their autonomy to chose their students. Even the new policy still allow for payment for screening.” He continued, ‘’The minister’s directive is the illogicality of our quasi, and feeding-bottle federalism carried to a ridiculous extreme. Education is on the concurrent list and private universities not extension of government bureaucracy despite the need for uniform standards.
“Two years ago, the National Assembly had a public hearing on scraping Post-Jamb. The weight of evidence against JAMB made it impossible to scrapped Post-JAMB. “The very last UTME was most embarrassing with JAMB experiencing system failure. Affected students were dashed 40 marks each by JAMB! What a manner of examination body?”
2016 UTME candidates are still waiting endlessly for institutions to announce the finalized admission guidelines.
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