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Jamb Cancels National Cut-off Marks, Empowers Schools To Set Benchmark


Jamb Cancels National Cut-off Marks, Empowers Schools To Set Benchmark

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has cancelled the traditional national cut-off marks for admissions into universities, polytechnics, and colleges of education in the country.

This means that institutions are now at liberty to set their minimum benchmark for admissions into their various institutions as approved, on Tuesday, at the 2021 policy meeting on administrations to tertiary institutions in Nigeria.

The policy meeting which was held virtually was presided over by the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Education Arc. Sonny Echono.

The cancellation of the national cut-off marks was adopted by stakeholders at the meeting including Vice-Chancellors, Provost and Rectors among others.

This came as the federal government has directed the Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, Professor Ishaq Oloyede, to forward the list of heads of tertiary institutions involved in the illegal admission of students for sanction.

Adamu was angry with the revelation by the Registrar of JAMB, at the meeting that over 500,000 students were illegally admitted by some tertiary institutions and are seeking regularisation of their admissions by JAMB.

The minister, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Education Arc. Sonny Echono insisted that admissions by institutions outside the Central Admissions Processing System (CAPS), introduced by JAMB were unacceptable.

Adamu particularly said that all the Vice-Chancellors of universities, Provosts of colleges of education and Rectors of polytechnics, whether currently in office or retired who are found to be involved in such irregular admissions would be punished.

Speaking during the meeting, the Registrar of JAMB Prof. Is-haq Oloyede said some universities such as the University of Maiduguri proposed 150, Usman Dan Fodio University Sokoto proposed 140, Pan Atlantic University proposed 210, University of Lagos 200, Lagos State University190, Covenant University190, Bayero University Kano, 180.

The stakeholders also approved October 29, 2021, as the deadline for the closure of amendments for 2021 admissions.

On the deadline for the closure of admissions, the stakeholders resolved to allow the ministry to decide as they could not agree on the December 31, 2021, deadline for all public institutions and January 31st 2022 for all private institutions.

Stakeholders also adopted the 2021 admission guidelines, which provide that all applications for part-time or full-time programmes for degree, Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE), Ordinary National Diploma (OND), and others must be posted only through JAMB.

The meeting approved that for Direct Entry, DE, the maximum score a candidate can present is 6 and the minimum is 2 or E, as required by law.

Speaking on other admission criteria, he said the candidate’s credentials must be uploaded on Central Admissions Processing System (CAPS) and recommended by the institution, JAMB approves and the candidate accepts the offer of admission.

He said if candidates have not accepted an offer, the institution could change the candidate after informing JAMB

The meeting also resolved that every institution should maintain its own minimum score as approved by the policy meeting.

According to the stakeholders, the 2021 admissions would be conducted only through CAPS, no institution is allowed to admit candidates without uploading their details on CAPS.

Oloyede further disclosed that for the 2021/2022 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), the board is introducing two new subjects: computer studies and physical and health education, bringing to a total of 25 subjects.

The stakeholders also exempted prison inmates, visually impaired and foreign candidates from sitting for post-UTME exercise.

Speaking on the 2020 admissions, Oloyede said out of the 956,809 admission spaces in the 962 higher education institutions in the country about 600,000 have so far been admitted.

While saying there are many admission spaces that have not been filled up in several courses due to a lack of qualified candidates, Oloyede said private universities in the country were only able to admit 36,381 candidates out of the 120,938 spaces available to them.

Declaring the policy meeting open, Minister of Education, Adamu, commended JAMB for introducing the use of the National Identification Number, (NIN), in the registration process for UTME.

Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Sonny Echono, the minister said the use of NIN drastically reduced examination malpractice in the 2021 exam, adding that the West African Examination Council, (WAEC), will also follow a similar path by adopting mandatory use of NIN.

“I am enthused that the last examination recorded the lowest cases of examination irregularities in the history of the board because those who will normally have exploited the weak links through biometrics infractions had been effectively check-mated with the introduction of NIN by JAMB.

“It is gratifying that the WAEC has decided to follow the path of using NIN to curb examination malpractices. The Ministry is presently considering other ways of using the NIN to uncover some other admission irregularities and all perpetrators including their collaborators in the institutions would be made to face the consequences.”

On illegal admissions being conducted by some tertiary institutions, the minister expressed concerns that the government’s directive that all admissions should be done through JAMB’s Central Admissions Processing System, CAPS, is being violated.

He directed JAMB to furnish the government with the list of affected institutions for necessary punishments.

His words: “It is saddening that despite the clear directives at previous policy meetings some institutions still illegally admitted candidates outside CAPS. I consider such activities as a direct affront on the system and appropriate sanctions shall be applied to those found to have been in such a disruptive act.

“Similarly, any institution that issued admission letters to candidates outside CAPS will be punished for such gross indiscipline and fraud.

“The consequence of admissions conducted outside of CAPS is grievous. It subjects the candidates to gloom future as the nemesis of illegal admission awaits them at the completion of study when it will be impossible to take full advantage of the acquired candidates.

“As a demonstration of our resolve, I have directed JAMB to bring forward for appropriate sanctions, the list of all institutions involved in the violation of the directive of government which was was personally conveyed by me at the 2018 policy meeting in Gbongan, Osun State.”

Nigerian Tribune

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