By Gabriel Dike
The Nigeria Examinations Committee (NEC) of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has blamed private schools for the high incidence of examination malpractice recoded during the conduct of the May/June West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
The NEC of the council which met in Lagos recently asked state governments to sanction erring private school proprietors and institutions to serve as a deterrent.
The decision were taken at the 61st NEC meeting and the communiqué signed by WAEC Head of Public Affairs, Mr. Demianus Ojijeogu and made available to Daily Sun, said the committee decried the situation whereby private schools who do not have regular students register candidates for school exam.
The committee, which is the highest decision-making organ of WAEC on examination related issues in Nigeria, observed the high incidence of exam fraud in private schools and attributed it to the registration of non-students for WASSCE for school candidates.
It also observed the decline in the reported examination malpractice cases in 2015 compared to 2013 and 2014 and lauded the council for deploying appropriate technology in the conduct of its WASSCE.
WAEC NEC gave kudos to state ministries of education for putting in place measures to fight examination malpractice in public schools and advised that efforts be made to extend such to private schools.
On states with high cases of examination malpractice, the NEC agreed that the council through its state offices partner with the ministries of education in those states for policing and monitoring of exams centres during the WASSCE to forestall exam fraud.
The committee observed that collusion recorded the highest percentage of examination malpractice cases in the 2015 WASSCE for private candidates even as it hailed the council for developing a software to tackle collusion by candidates in multiple choice questions in its exams.
According to the three-page communiqué, NEC considered the various reported cases of malpractice and approved appropriate sanctions in all established cases of exam fraud as prescribed by the rules and regulations governing the conduct of the council’s examinations.
WAEC NEC also approved the cancellation of the entire results of candidates involved in proven cases while subject results of those involved in established cases which attract Cancellation of Subject Results (CSR), be similarly cancelled.
It recommended that some candidates found wanting be dealt with and the sanction including barring them from sitting for the council’s examinations for a certain number of years while some schools would be derecognised.
‘’The decisions of the committee will be implemented without delay and the affected candidates and schools will be duly informed by the council. However, the results of candidates who were exonerated by the committee will be released, NEC noted.’’
The committee considered special cases of clemency, restitution, petitions and previous issues referred for further investigation from previous examinations.