Father arrested for writing UTME for son – JAMB

A father has been arrested alongside his son, writing the ongoing Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) for his son, the Registrar, Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, has said.

Speaking while on inspection tour of UTME centres in Kaduna at the Kaduna State University (KASU) CBT Centre Wednesday, Prof. Oloyede said the 2024 examination is largely well conducted, except for few cases of impersonation, which became possible because some people now have multiple National Identity Number (NIN). 

He however, warned that those who cheat in the exams will be arrested either now or after the examination, noting that JAMB has improved its technology to check those engaging in all forms of examination malpractices.

According to the JAMB registrar, “for those who engage in cheating, they should know that it does not pay. The technology is helping is to check that. Across the country, most of the problem we have is impersonation. For instance now, we say we have NIN, we now have cases of people with two NIN and therefore that has defeated the purpose of identity verification. We are going to take that up with NIMC, that there are people who have two NIN.

“We have a case of a father impersonating his son, writing examination for the son and I wonder, are you not destroying your son’s future? Two of them are now in custody. I can’t understand what the father will now tell his son when they are both locked up in the same cell. This happened definitely not in Kaduna, but I don’t want to disclose the state. It is largely cases of impersonation, but we are ahead of them; we are just picking them up like chicken now, because the facilities are there for us to see what they are doing and to pick them up.” 

The JAMB Registrar informed those that have missed the examination for reasons not caused by JAMB to forget about it, saying that JAMB cannot spend tens of millions of the nation’s resources to reorganize a session for few candidates who missed the exams due to their personal recklessness. He warned that, UTME is not a school based examination, as such, JAMB would not be responsible for any failure caused to candidates who registered through their secondary schools, who either deliberately or due to logistics challenges could not get the candidates to meet their requirements.

“Most of those candidates who missed the UTME are students from hostels who were made to register through schools because of the money the schools want to collect from the parents in the name of JAMB, they would now put 30 students in one bus. They will now be dropping them in different locations. By the they get to the last student’s centre, he is already late for the exam. You will now see the principal writing to me. What business do I have with a school?

“Even a religious body wrote to me that, oh, the following 100 candidates, I want them to write their exams on a particular day of the examination. They were even deciding for me the school to post the candidates. How is that possible? I will ask the candidates, why did you submit your registration number to a third party that is writing to me, when the person is not a candidate. And you know as a candidate that you have a right to write to JAMB directly. But, they allow third party who will lie on their behalf to contact JAMB,” he said.

Prof. Oloyede, who commended the Kaduna mega CBT Center which sits 4,000 candidates daily, said the Board needs support of highly populated states like Lagos to build mega CBT centres like that of Kaduna, “if we can have two or three of such CBT centres across the country, most of our challenges would be over. And we have the resources to build it. We only require the state governments to provide the land. We require this type of centre in Lagos too, we have put enough pressure on the authorities in Lagos, but they have not given us the desired response. 

“You can see the relief this centre that, Kaduna state government provided land for, is giving us. Kaduna state government provided us the land and we expended from the public fund more than N1.4billion to build those four centres and you can see, they are sitting 1,100 candidates at a time, which means, in two days, you would have done exam for 8,000 candidates. But I believe the authorities in Lagos will respond to our call and provide a suitable land. We will build it.”