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Exams fraud: JAMB to investigate involved staff, parents

Posted by Vanguard on 2005/05/13 | Views: 559 |

Exams fraud: JAMB to investigate involved staff, parents


The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has added a new dimension to its war against those who perpetrate fraud in its examinations.

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has added a new dimension to its war against those who perpetrate fraud in its examinations.

Following vital information unearthed last Saturday while monitoring the Universities Matriculation Examination (UME) in Lagos, clear indications emerged that the fraudsters who operate with audacity might be working in concert with some officials of JAMB.

Registrar and Chief Executive of the Board, Professor Bello Ahmed Salim has thus disclosed that all officials whose names were mentioned by individuals who were arrested for impersonating JAMB officials during last Saturdayís UME would be thoroughly investigated and those found guilty would face the full wrath of the law.

Declaring that the investigations would begin immediately, Salim added that parents who were also indicted by the confessional statements of their children caught last Saturday would also be investigated. The parents are to be fished out wherever they are, and if found culpable, would be handed over to the police for appropriate action. The introduction of investigation of parents who encouraged their children to cheat or look for assistance in the examination is a new development in the boardís war on exam malpractices.

Many candidates suspected of trying to cheat either because they had no single document authorizing them by JAMB to sit for the exam or who had not shaded in a single answer close to one hour after the kick-off of the examination confessed to have each paid close to N20,000 to special centres after promising them that they would assist them and that their parents gave them the money.

Since these parents know that the official rate of obtaining JAMBís registration form is N2,650 and they still parted with amounts ranging from N18,000 to N25,000 to secure help for their children, Salim declared that they are also guilty of the criminal offence.

At St. Joseph Secondary School, Idi-Mangoro, Agege, a 16-year old girl, Chukwuma Linda, who had no JAMB receipt for her registration form, was discovered to have paid a total sum of N17,000 to a school, Lagos Academy, Orile Agege which issued her two receipts for that amount.

Questioned by the Minister of State for Education, Hajia Bintu Ibrahim Musa, who also monitored the exercise in Lagos, Linda, who innocently brought out the receipts of the money paid to Lagos Academy, confessed that her parents gave her the money. "I told my parents that I wanted to do JAMB and they gave me the money."

Another candidate, Rasaki Ishola Isah, who had not even written his name on the answer script not to talk of answering a single question 40 minutes after the exams started at Vega College, Agege also confessed that a relation of his bought the form for him from a tutorial centre at an amount far in excess of JAMBís official rate.

More stunning however is the discovery at Ifedayo International School, Agbado-Ijaiye where one Rotimi Oyeyipo, who paraded himself as JAMBís official before the monitoring team arrived the school. What gave him away as an impersonator was JAMBís identity card he was carrying which was immediately picked out as fake by JAMB officials who were monitoring the exercise.

After journalists thoroughly cross-examined him in the presence of fully armed security escorts attached to Salim, Oyeyipo mentioned one Mr. Sunday Ademola whom he said works in JAMBís treasury department. Oyeyipo was promptly arrested and handed over to the police while Salim ordered his aides to contact all the treasury departments of the Board to verify his claim. Salim said that the case would be thoroughly investigated, adding that no JAMB official indicted will escape disciplinary action.

Asked to comment on the allegation making the rounds that many of the fraudsters operate successfully with conniving JAMB officials, Salim said: "It is true that there are these allegations.

We all saw the fake identity card of Rotimi Oyeyipo who claimed to be a JAMB staff. It is probably true that he has links with our staff. He is now in police custody. We will expose any JAMB staff who is involved in this and similar practices but we will not rush and jump to conclusion without carrying out a thorough investigation."

Closely related to this case is that of the discovery of the former Executive Secretary of the National Business and Technical Education Board (NBTEB), Professor Olu Aina who also led a group of monitors in Lagos State. Aina was at the Tenderland College, Coker Village, Orile-Iganmu on a tip-off where he caught the schoolís Vice-Principal trying to smuggle prepared answer scripts to candidates. Five groups were raised by Salim to monitor the examination in Lagos alone; about 10 candidates were apprehended and handed over to the police for appropriate action.

Speaking on the desperation of many candidates to pass the exams by cheating, Mr. Michael Saidu Angulu, the pioneer registrar of JAMB between 1977 and 1986, who also monitored the exercise in Lagos says: "Candidates were few in my time, not more than 100,000 candidates sitting for the exam in a year. The increased figure of candidates who sit for the exam nowadays has really compounded the problems associated with organising the exams. However, we need to re-orientate our values whereby we see university education as a must."

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