• FINGERS CROSSED

    General Discussions

    Muna Muna
    28-06-2016 09:30:00 +0000

    The Minister of Education, Mr. Adamu Adamu, on Monday, again directed the nation’s tertiary institutions to stop the conduct of post-Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.

    “Those who have already advertised for the conduct of the post-UTME under any guise should stop the exercise immediately as any university caught conducting it will face appropriate sanctions. “If any tertiary institution has conducted the post-UTME, such an exercise stands annulled and money taken from candidates must be returned immediately,” Adamu said in a statement.

    The minister, who made this known through the Deputy Director (Press and Public Relations) in the ministry, Mr. Ben Bem Goong, also directed the National Universities Commission and appropriate departments in the ministry to “communicate this directive to relevant agencies and institutions to ensure strict compliance.”

    The minister has also summoned all vice-chancellors and rectors to an emergency meeting over the post-UTME, findings by our correspondents have revealed. The meeting, it was learnt, would hold tomorrow in Abuja.

    Adamu, while declaring open a Combined Policy Meeting on admission to universities, polytechnics and other higher institutions, three weeks ago in Abuja, scrapped the post-UTME. But findings by our correspondents revealed that many institutions have defied the minister’s directive with some already initiating fresh modalities for the 2016/2017 post-UTME. For instance, the authorities of the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, have not only conducted the exercise tagged “MOUAU 2016 Admissions Intelligence Quotient Screening”, the outcome of the exercise is already on the university’s website. The university conducted the IQ screening between July 20 and 21. At the University of Benin, where the two-week exercise kicked off on Monday (yesterday), at its Ugbowo campus, candidates registered for the screening with N2,000. According its Head of Public Relations, Mr. Michael Osasuyi, the university will continue with the exercise until it receives a formal directive from the Federal Ministry of Education not to conduct the screening.

    “We are doing our admission screening. The minister did not say that we should stop the screening.”

    Osasuyi added that the post-UTME was necessary to select candidates from the thousands jostling for less than 10,000 spaces in the institution. For Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, which has fixed its screening to start from July 4, its Public Relations Officer, Mr. Chris Adamaigbo, declined comments on why the institution opted for the exercise despite the minister’s directive. Adamaigbo only directed one of our correspondents to check the institution’s website for answers. “Please, check our website and you will get the answer to your question,” he said. At the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, candidates for the screening, which holds between July 5 and 20, registered for it with N2,000. At the Lagos State University, Ojo, the authorities demanded N5,000 registering fee for the screening. The registration that started on June 9 ended on June 24. For the Kwara State University, Malete, one of our correspondents gathered that the institution had concluded the post-UTME for the forthcoming academic session with the candidates paying N3,500.

    The authorities of the University of Jos said they had yet to get a clear directive on the issue from the ministry. The UNIJOS Assistant Registrar, Publications and Protocol, Mr. Abdullahi Abdullahi, said the university had not received any official communication to enable it to decide on the new admission procedure.
    But for the authorities of the University of Calabar and the Cross River University of Technology, they would wait for the outcome of the meeting with the minister before announcing their position on the process.
    The Public Relations Officer of UNICAL, Mr. Effiong Eyo, said on Monday, “Tomorrow (Tuesday) all the vice-chancellors in the country will be meeting with the minister. It is only after that meeting that we will comment on the post-UTME.” Also, the Registrar of CRUTECH, Mr. Gabriel Beshel, said the institution would wait for the outcome of the meeting before taking a position on the issue. While the UNIUYO Director of Information, Dr. Godfrey Essien, said he would not comment on the issue, the Registrar, College of Education, Afaha Nsit, Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Idorenyin Uko, said the institution had suspended the exercise in line with the Federal Government’s directive. Meanwhile, the minister, who said the responsibility for admission to tertiary institutions lied with JAMB, insisted that “under no circumstance should anybody or institution take over that responsibility by proxy.”
    He added, “For the avoidance of doubt, any educational institution after secondary education is regarded as a tertiary institution. Therefore, all tertiary institutions, polytechnics, colleges of education, universities or by whatever name it is called after secondary education must be subjected to admission through the JAMB. “At the end of probationary admission by JAMB, the candidates can be cleared (screened) for final admission. For any institution with a shortfall in admission, such institution can revert to JAMB for supplementary admission. Clearing in this case (screening) entails only the verification of certificates of the candidates, JAMB scores, and any other physical examination to ensure that such candidates are not cultists.

    “After this, the candidates are qualified for matriculation. Such screening should be at no cost to the parents or students and should be done upon resumption in order to avoid unnecessary travels in search of admission.” In a related development, the Vice-Chancellor, University of Medical Sciences, Ondo, Ondo State, Prof. Friday Okonofua, has faulted the scrapping of the post-UTME. The don said the development might create a greater crisis instead of solving the “perceived problems” in the education sector. Okonofua, who stated this while briefing journalists on the planned inauguration of Friends of UNIMED Fund in Ondo, said the government did not make enough consultations before taking the decision. Copyright PUNCH.

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