Friday, June 17, 2011

UTME holds tomorrow, JAMB insists

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board, JAMB, yesterday, said there was no change in date for the conduct of its 2011 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, examination slated for  tomorrow across the country and in six foreign countries.

A total of 1, 493, 603 candidates who registered for the 2011 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, will sit for the examination.

Spokesperson of JAMB, Mr. Timothy Oyedeji, who stated this while reacting to reports that tomorrow’s examination coincided with the Nigerian Army recruitment examination, said the Board was not aware of any examination being conduct by the Army same day.

Oyedeji said: “JAMB is not changing the date of its examination because of the Army’s recruitment examination; Army examination is not a regular or scheduled examination.

“JAMB is not aware  of any Army examination and, therefore, we are going ahead to conduct the examinations for our candidates on Saturday, June 18, 2011.”

According to him, JAMB as a responsible public exam body has positively responded to national calls by shifting UTME for the last general elections and NECO examination cannot afford to shift the date of the exam again.

Meanwhile, there are about 117 universities in the country owned by federal, states and private  entities, mainly churches and individuals, spread across the country.

Due to acute shortage of spaces, only about 20 per cent of  qualified candidates can be offered admission, leaving the remaining 80 per cent to wait for the next entrance examination.

Introduces biometric verification

For the first time, JAMB is introducing the biometric system of registration of candidates in order to checkmate impersonation and other malpractices associated with the examination in the past.

Since  JAMB introduced and test-run the biometric system, it had caused apprehensions and difficulties for most of the candidates.

However, some of the challenges had been solved, although anxiety still persists about the workability of the system in ensuring smooth conduct of the examination tomorrow.

Biometric system of registration will capture the face, finger prints, and other personal data of a candidate, almost akin to the last voters’ registration for the recent 2011 general elections.

In an earlier interview with Vanguard, Professor Dibu Ojerinde, JAMB Registrar, explained that the biometric system will eliminate impersonation,  a situation where people wrote the entrance examination for others, undermining the integrity of the exercise.

Even at that, the new method has posed some difficulties for the candidates.

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