On Tuesday, The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) arrested two biological children of an accredited Computer Based Test (CBT) center owner in Lagos, over alleged examination malpractice.
This arrest was made in Lagos during a monitoring tour of various CBT centres in Lagos by the board’s Registrar, Prof Is’haq Oloyede.
The registrar said over 100 “professional examination writers” had so far been arrested and handed over to the law enforcement agencies.
The arrested children were said to have been caught using their mobile telephones to take pictures of the ongoing Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) questions.
“We were on our normal monitoring when this alarm came in that this centre, there was examination malpractice that took place.
“I was informed that what they did was to take screenshots of the examination questions, compile them and forward same to some of these tutorial centers which, in turn, used the questions to defraud prospective candidates.
“Unfortunately, they are not aware that we are ahead of them. We have put in place, cutting edge technologies that expose fraudulent practices intended to undermine the integrity of our examination.
“What they did here was to deliberately disconnect the CCTV, thinking that we would not be able to track whatever happened here through our central CCTV in Abuja.
“One thing these fraudsters failed to understand is that we do not repeat questions used as far back as four or five years ago, let alone using them for any of the four sessions we deploy per day.
“These questions have been standardized and so they can never be the same.
“So you see these kinds of things are happening in Lagos. You can then imagine what happens elsewhere.
“We will be glad if these fraudsters are prosecuted even if the center owners are let off the hook,” he said.
According to the registrar, with this offence, the center will be banned from conducting the board’s examination with immediate effect.
Oloyede said that all candidates previously scheduled to sit for the examination in the center would immediately be moved to another one.
“No one will be allowed to write the examination here again, because the center in the first place, is not conducive for the test,” he added.
He revealed that some desperate parents were in the habit of paying up to 10 persons to sit for the examination for just one child of theirs.
“You will discover that such a candidate who goes to university with his or her picture is not the same as the one who wrote the UTME neither was he or she the one who wrote the WASSCE.
“So what is going to happen is for us to find a way of ensuring more synergy between the assessment bodies and the institutions, in such a way that all sharp practices are nipped into the bud.
“We are also looking at building mega CBT centers for our examinations but this we cannot also achieve alone.
“We have acquired a piece of land in Osun for that purpose, just as we have done in Abia. We are also trying to get one in Imo as we have a high concentration of candidates in these states.“We will also encourage genuine private investors who will now be the body that will accredit its own subgroups, just as we will also bring in the Computer Registration Council of Nigeria,” he added