The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) registrar, Professor Dibu Ojerinde has come under serious fire since the news of a new admission policy introduced by the board filtered in to the media.
What initially started as a rumour became real following the implementation of the said policy at the University of Lagos where the school authorities announced that only candidates whose names were officially forwarded by JAMB that are eligible to participate in this year’s UNILAG Post UTME.
Our findings showed that the new policy affects Universities with too many applicants. JAMB at its 2015 Combined Policy Meeting adopted a policy whereby candidates of universities with surplus applicants for the Unified Matriculation Examinations (UTME) are reassigned to other universities with lower number of applicants than their capacities. This means that the reassigned candidates will have to write Post Utme screening test at the new universities they were re-assigned to.
A statement credited to the Professor Ojerinde stated that the new policy promises two benefits:
1) It will be beneficial to “needy Universities” that is universities with lower number of candidates than their capacities, as this will ensure that these universities will have more candidates to admit.
2) Candidates will have better chances for admission in the universities they are re-assigned to, contrary to situations where they would await admission in the universities of their first choices until the admission exercise closes and they forfeit admission in that session.
On further investigations, it was revealed that some UNILAG aspirants who scored as much as 250 in the 2015 UTME were denied their chance of participating in the upcoming admission screening exam in the school. Some of those candidates were reassigned to other universities including private Unis.
The new development did not go down well with the candidates, their parents, and indeed some other stakeholders in the education sector. They have besieged the University of Lagos and offices of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, calling for the resignation or outright sack of the registrar.
The protesters explained that JAMB is forcing them into random schools against their individual wishes and threatened to bring legal action against the Board.
They also admonished the University of Lagos for raising the post utme eligibility cut-off mark from the school’s usual 200 to over 250, accusing the institution of arbitrarily changing JAMB’s cut-off score to its own dictate.
When contacted on phone, JAMB spokesperson, Mr Fabian Benjamin stated that universities are allowed to go above the National admission examination cut off mark which is 180. He also has this to say about the ongoing events in the University of Lagos; “If the University of Lagos has over 25,000 students applying and they have a carrying capacity of less than 7,000 and has over 15,000 candidates that scored over 250, why will they take less than 250. It simply means the university is trying to see how they can get the best.”
NANS Rejects New JAMB Regulation, Calls for Probe and Sack of Ojerinde
Meanwhile, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has threatened to mobilize over 6 million students for a mass protest against the new JAMB policy if it’s not immediately reversed. A statement issued by the General Secretary and Public Relations Officer of NANS Zone D, Comr. Obanobi Bidemi and Comr. Olatinwo Jeremiah, called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to probe JAMB finances. The student body also went ahead to pass a vote of no confidence on JAMB registrar, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde.
“Over 40 million Nigerian students at home and in diaspora want the JAMB registrar to define the word “CHOICE of INSTITUTION”. Why would I be posted to a school I never applied for? Why would I be posted to a school above my parents’/sponsors’ means.
“We saw this trend coming from last year when the myopic board reduced the options of institution of choice from six to three claiming it is to save students from the fraudulent activities of tertiary institutions in the process of admitting students.
“We call on the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to begin a probe into the accounts of the admission board, its registrar and top echeleon as it has been paid by proprietors of private tertiary institutions hence the bastardization of the admission exercise – a great semblance to the scandal that rocked the world football governing body, FIFA,” it said.