The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has stated that protests by some candidates in Lagos and Benin over the closure of the JAMB registration portal ahead of the 2016 Unified Matriculation Examination billed to start in a few days are wrong and unjustifiable, querying why they waited this long to complete registration, which started in August 2016.
It stated that the protests might be antics to force JAMB into establishing special centres where late candidates would be able to perpetrate examination malpractices, saying that the “Board is at the moment working tirelessly to conduct one of the best examinations globally.”
According to a statement signed by the Head of Media, Dr Fabian Benjamin and made available to newsmen, the Board had given candidates ample time to register, thus beginning the sale of application forms since August 2015, because “it is JAMB’s wish that Nigerian youth desirous of tertiary education are giving ample opportunity to register for its examination.”
The statement noted that the Board had made it clear in the advertisement for the sale of the registration documents, that the sales would close by January but had to shift the closure to February due to public appeal that it should be extended.
According to JAMB, the closure of the portal was necessary to allow it prepare adequately for the examination, as it cannot allow candidates to register perpetually, because “there is a timetable and JAMB adheres strictly to it to allow the tertiary institutions begin the process of admission early. We all must work to enshrine the culture of discipline in the system and ensure that tertiary institutions’ calendars are regular.
This is just as it denied the claim by candidates that they were being posted to examination centres of faraway places, noting that “the Board doesn’t post candidates to examination towns. Candidates picked the towns of their choice while we send them to centres within their chosen towns.”
“It’s most unfortunate that some candidates waited until our website was withdrawn before making attempts to register. This scenario looks very suspicious, for a candidate who is billed to sit for an examination slated for February to suddenly appear in the same February protesting his inability to register less than a week to the examination when he knew that the registration was too close in the same month.
“Through this same process over a million candidates have applied within this period and the Board has made adequate preparation for them to sit for the 2016 exercise. However, it is common knowledge that one of the challenges of public examination in Nigeria is examination malpractice and one of the antics of the perpetrators of these acts is to force the Board into establishing a special centre where late candidates will be bunched together to perpetrate exam malpractice.”