Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board
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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has issued a warning against higher education institutions offering admission to applicants outside of the Central Admission Processing System (CAPS).

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JAMB stated that, in addition to distorting enrollment statistics in the nation’s tertiary institutions, which are required for national planning and development strategies, the conduct is also a “violation of ministerial directive on education policy.”

According to the JAMB registrar, Is-haq Oloyede, who stated this on Tuesday at a stakeholders’ forum in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, despite constant warnings against such behavior, Nigerian tertiary institutions offered a total of 706,189 ‘illegal’ admissions across universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, and monotechnics between 2017 and 2020.

According to Mr. Oloyede, a total of 114 degree-awarding institutions, including affiliated universities and colleges of education, conducted 67,795 ‘illegal’ admissions during the period.

He went on to say that 137 National Diploma (ND) certificate awarding institutions, such as polytechnics and schools of health technologies, offered a total of 142,818 ‘illegal’ admissions over the three-year period, while 37 monotechnic institutions offered 5,678 ‘illegal’ admissions.

“In 2017, the Board introduced the Central Admissions Processing System (CAPS) as a flowchart to ensure quality control, transparency, and credibility of admissions,” said the JAMB registrar. It was also intended, among other things, to completely eliminate human interference, which invariably resulted in abuse, in the processing of admissions into the nation’s tertiary institutions.

The system allows institutions to admit only candidates who meet the requirements set by individual institutional proprietors and academic boards/senates.

The process includes the following steps: the institutional admissions officer initiating the admission of a candidate after confirming the satisfaction of the set criteria; the candidate being recommended by the institution’s head; JAMB approving the admission; the candidate accepting the admission; and the candidate printing the admission letter.

According to Mr. Oloyede’s presentation, the top five universities with the most ‘illegal’ admissions offered during the period are the Universities of Jos, Plateau State, with 7,600 cases; Benue State University, Makurdi, with 6,161 cases; Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Ago Iwoye, Ogun State, with 5,669 cases; Kwara State University, Malete, with 4,281 cases; and Novena

Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin, topped the chart with a total of 45,471 cases within three years, closely followed by Auchi Polytechnic, Edo State, with 37,828 cases, and Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, with 30,856 cases within the same period.

The Federal Polytechnic, Oko, Anambra State, and the Federal Polytechnic, Nasarawa, Nasarawa State are the others, with 24,335 and 24,335 students, respectively.

The institutions indicted have yet to respond to the allegations.

Mr. Oloyede claims that, in addition to distorting national statistics, candidates admitted through irregular admission processes face difficulties in advancing to the next rung of their career or academic ladders.

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Unfortunately, this practice by our institutions has harmed the country’s image, as statistics provided by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and similar agencies are inaccurate by up to 900 percent in some cases.

This distorts data on the number of students enrolled in our tertiary institutions. JAMB is then forced to provide drastically different numbers of entrants for the same year. Furthermore, erroneous pressure is placed on JAMB each year to condone (or legalize) such illegal and improper admissions made three or four years earlier by heads of institutions who, in almost all cases, are not the incumbents.

Beneficiaries of such ‘illegal’ admissions, according to Mr. Oloyede, are made “victims of deprivation” upon graduation.

“When graduates of the illegitimate process require JAMB admission letters to pursue post-graduate endeavors such as housemanship, scholarship, and enrolment in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), among others, they realize they are out of step.”

In the past, some candidates were forced to seek Direct Entry into other universities after graduation because their degrees were not recognized due to a lack of admission letters at critical stages.

The physical, psychological, and mental strain placed on such candidates is better imagined than felt. This could have been avoided if everyone had followed the rules of the game,” Mr. Oloyede added.

The JAMB registrar also expressed dissatisfaction with the conduct of the country’s two A-Level entrance examinations, the Joint Universities Preliminary Examinations Board (JUPEB), and the Interim Joint Matriculation Board Examination (IJMBE).

In order to find a long-term solution to the problem, JAMB stated that it has already proposed to the education minister, Adamu Adamu, the establishment of both an A-Level task team and an A-Level Qualification Verification Databank, which will serve as a repository for verified A-level qualifications in the country.

Meanwhile, the examination body announced that it has approved the addition of two new subjects to its examination, which will be added to the existing 23 subjects for candidate combinations.

The addition of two subjects—Computer Studies and Physical and Health Education—will “improve the career prospects of students transitioning to tertiary institutions.”

Mr. Oloyede stated that the subjects will be available to candidates taking the UTME in 2022.

As part of its efforts to curtail some identified “unethical practices” by operators of accredited computer-based testing (CBT) centers, JAMB has resolved to embed the centers’ approved N700 registration fees in its application form fees.

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