The Africa Arise for Change Network (AACN) has urged Nigerians to show understanding for the Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board (JAMB) as it faces unique challenges in bringing Nigerian tertiary institutions’ entrance examination to contemporary world standards.
Reacting to protests that followed recently conducted Computer Based Test (CBT) by JAMB, the Network’s leader, Nkechi Odoma, explained that Nigerians would have reacted differently if they understood the enormity of logistics and technicalities involved in the exercise.
Odoma, who spoke at a press conference in Abuja on Saturday, clarified that her group was not holding brief for the examination body but that it would be sad to see the innovations brought in by JAMB’s Registrar, Professor Dibu Ojerinde rolled back on account of hitches experienced this year.
She noted that Nigerians however have the right and responsibility to insist that JAMB performs better next time since the examination directly impact the future of youths and the finances of their parents.
“We are not saying people should not protest or air their grievances, but those of us interested in the quality of education in this country should be seriously worried when proprietors of ‘miracles examination centres’ are sponsoring protests simply because the Computer Based Test introduced by JAMB under Professor Ojerinde has sent them out of their dubious businesses.
“If we truly want world standard, we should be asking how to make the next JAMB (examination) better instead of holding protests to roll back the progress made with CBT. Let us not forget that some candidates see the protests as a gamble that could pay off if the results and entire examination are cancelled.
“How the poor scores of some candidates translated into attempts to disrupt the entire organisation is something we should all be questioning since the protests totally lacked all the elements that one sees in spontaneous actions that are not orchestrated or managed by entrenched interests.” Odoma stressed.
According to her, candidates should face up to the reality that CBT is now the norm since most recruitment firms now use it in place of handwritten tests that are now out dated on the global scene.
She stressed that the JAMB Registrar and the organisation should rather be commended for their foresight and innovative spirit as it would have been catastrophic for the nation’s educational system if the examination was still being conducted using the old method.