The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Tuesday, blamed the 35% drop in 2014 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, on the insecurity in some parts of the country.
The Registrar and Chief Executive of JAMB, Professor Dibu Ojerinde stated this in Abuja, while briefing journalists on the board preparation towards the 2014 UTME.
He said the board have started investigation on reasons why Nigerian universities admit lesser applicants to their carrying capacities.
According to the JAMB boss, “We will not reveal our strategies to the public but we know there are security challenges in some parts of the country but of course we have made adequate arrangement to conduct examinations in such States and in everywhere in Nigeria.
There are some areas full of insecurities and we have made adequate security arrangement and if the worse come to the worse we will result to CBT to such candidates.
“From the Northeast which is one of the troubled areas, the number of candidates coming from there is relatively lower than last year and therefore we had a shortfall and that is the reason why there were lesser candidates this year compared to last year. And you know why it is not only education that is being troubled even the economy of that areas are affected. So therefore not many people are coming out to do the exams”.
Compared to UTME in 2013, a total of 1,735,892 candidates registered. The figure for the 2014 UTME shows a decrease of 129,139 applicants compared with last year’s figure of 1,735,892.
On Nigerian universities capacities, “Recently I setup a committee to find out reasons why Nigerian universities admit lesser figures to their carrying capacities. Spaces are there, the federal government have created huge access but no admission. Most of Nigerian institutions are not responsive to their carrying capacities”.
On 2014 UTME, “This year’s examination will be in three modes: Computer based test (CBT), Dual Based Test (DBT) and Paper Pencil Test ((PPT). This desire to go full-blown CBT has been the resolve of the of the Board owing to the need to curb examination hitches of result ‘black-outs’ and other forms of malpractice that have been norm in the PPT.
“The level of success recorded at 2013 UTME is no doubt a testimony for us to take into consideration. The Board is proud to announce that it recorded no incidences of malpractice in any of the centres where the CBT was conducted the last 2013 UTME”, he said.
He continued, “PPT and DBT is schedule to hold on Saturday, 12th April, 2014 while CBT will commence from Saturday, 17th May, 2014.
“A total of 990,179 candidates applied for the PPT, 25,325 candidates applied for the DBT and 616,574 candidates applied for the CBT, bringing the grand total of applicants for the 2014 to 1,606,753″.
“The State that has the highest number of PPT applications is Imo state (81,113), followed by Enugu (56,873) and the lowest was Abia State with 39,062.
“While Osun State is 2,091 and Kogi State, has the highest and lowest DBT. Federal Capital Territory, FCT, has the lowest PPT application while Bauchi State has the highest with 12,413. And Sokoto State has the lowest DBT applications with 26 candidates and Gombe State has the highest with 200 candidates.
He said, “The examination will hold simultaneously in 392 examination towns in Nigeria and 7 foreign centres namely, Accra in Ghana, Buea in Republic of Cameroon, Cotonou in Republic of Benin, London in United Kingdom, Jeddah in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Johannesburg in Republic of South Africa and Abidjan in Cote D’Voire.
“A total of 1,865 centres will be used for the conduct of the PPT examination. 133 centres will be used for DBT and 153 centres will be used for CBT.
“A total of 174 visually impaired candidates registered for 2014 and 196 inmates registered for 2013 UTME from Kaduna and Lagos prisons”.
He said biometric finger-print would check impersonation, lateness and proper identification of candidates before admitting them for examination.
He also warned candidates against the use of handsets or any communication gadgets in and around the examination venues is prohibited.
Anyone found with such gadgets would be deemed to have been engaged in examination malpractice and full weight of the provisions of examination malpractice, Decree No. 33 of 1999 will be applied. (Vanguard)