Paul Obi in Abuja
The Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Professor Is-haq Oloyede, has called on the federal government to revert to the old days where only serving vice-chancellors of universities were made chairmen of the governing board of JAMB for good synergy and harmonious relationship with a view to effectively deliver on the board’s objectives.
Oloyede made the call while presenting a paper at a meeting of the Association of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (AVCNU) in Abuja.
He explained that for almost two decades of the board from 1977 to 1993, only serving vice-chancellors were made chairmen, from Prof. OladipoAkinkugbe, VC University of Ilorin; Prof. Donald Ekong, VC University of Port Harcourt; Prof AdamuBaike, VC University of Benin; Prof. Mahdi Adamu, VC University of Sokoto; and Prof Isa Mohammed, VC University of Abuja.
“This practice, which promoted harmony and quality inputs on the board’s matriculation activities has since been forgotten or neglected. The appointment of the chairman of the board could be restricted to only heads of tertiary institutions in Nigeria perhaps in rotational basis among the vice-chancellor of universities, rectors of polytechnics, monotechnics and provosts of colleges education.”
The registrar also charged heads of tertiary institutions to participate in the supervision of the board’s matriculation examination particularly in the centres within their institutions and the neighborhood so as to improve the sanctity of the examination.
Oloyede appealed to the government to go back to the practice from inception, saying that the board is a creation of the committee of vice-chancellor and it will only be proper for them to be clearly recognised as active stakeholders to avoid any acrimony between tertiary institutions and JAMB.
He assured the AVCNU of his determination to ensure a smooth relationship with all institutions for the good of the board, reiterating his earlier stands that the task of JAMB is coordination of admissions and not substitution of traditional responsibilities of the senate and academic boards of tertiary institutions.
Oloyede however stated that “JAMB has the right to reject candidates for non-compliance with extant rules and regulations but will not be allowed to substitute or originate any name without the prior concurrence of the senate/academic board of the institution.”
He expressed his dissatisfaction “with the way the issues of regularisation have been handled by institutions”, and disclosed the observation by the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) over the abuse of the intervention policy which was meant to address certain admissions challenges but became an avenue for corrupt practices.
“In view of the abuse that the regularisation of admission has been subjected to by institutions, a new template to be completed online has been designed by the board to curtail the rampant request for regularisation and only regularised in very rare cases where sufficient and convincing reasons are given through a thorough process for candidates who need to be regularized.
“The process will ensure that after completing the form online the candidates will print an indemnity form which they will take to their vice-chancellors, rectors, provosts or registrars of their institutions to be signed before submission to the board through our state offices nation-wide. This process is to ensure that only genuinely admitted candidates are regularised.”
The registrar also disclosed that henceforth the board will discontinue the use of scratch cards for any of its services and rather use the platform of pin vending. “This is as a result of its consistent subjection to fraudulent practices, it is archaic and the board’s drive to also promote accountability in line with government zero tolerance for corruption.
“This new system will be accessible through the payment options of: web payment, ATM issued cards (Visa, Verve and MasterCard), online quick teller, ATM payment, quick teller mobile application and bank branch case and card.”
He disclosed that the National Assembly is in the process of amending the board’s act, adding that an appeal was made to the National Assembly when he visited the Senate Committee on Tertiary Education to suspend the process of the amendment and allow the board and all tertiary institutions including the ministry of education and other necessary stakeholders to go back to the round table for discussion at a very conducive atmosphere as all have agreed to work together for the benefit of the Nigerian child.
“The content of the bill as presently with the National Assembly is a product of acrimony and if passed will be counter-productive.”