•CBT administrator in Lagos seeks extension of deadline
•Board faults publication on dumping use of computer
By Michael Igiri James
Prospective candidates in the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) yesterday protested in Makurdi against their inability to register for the examination. The candidates blocked some major roads with bonfire as they marched to the JAMB office located along Inner Ring Road. They also took their protest to the governor’s office at Benue People’s House.
The protesters threw stones at the JAMB office before mobile policemen dispersed them. Reports say they resorted to the protest because they could not process their registration at the Computer Based Test centres (CBTs) due to insufficient facilities.
The protesters urged the Federal Government to revert to the old system of registration due to the stress associated with the new method. The state Commissioner for Education, Prof. Dennis Ityavyar, who addressed them at the Government House, urged the JAMB Registrar to open more centres to enable them to register for the examination.
Also, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Prof. Anthony Ijor appealed to them to be calm and promised to address their grievances. But, a senior JAMB official, Samuel Umoro, who admitted that there were some hitches, advised them to be patient, as all prospective candidates would be registered.
Meanwhile, 12 days into the registration, a CBT centre administrator, Adekunle Banjo, has appealed to the JAMB to extend the deadline for registration. Banjo, who owns, Bafuto Institute of Management and Information Technology, Egbe, Lagos, said the call became necessary due to the initial hitches associated with pin vending and the fact that some prospective candidates were currently writing the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
Investigations by some media houses in Lagos revealed that it takes three to seven days for a candidate to be fully registered, depending on the efficiency of the server and the internet.
However, the board has described the report titled “JAMB Dump CBT, adopt eight keys,” published in one of the national dailies as a misinterpretation of information presented by the board’s registrar.
The Director of Information, Dr. Fabian Benjamin, in a statement made available to The Guardian said the board “would continue all its examinations with the CBT mode, as it was already consolidating on the gains earlier recorded.
According to Benjamin, the headline was not only misleading, but capable of causing panic, distortion and confusion in the minds of Nigerians, particularly the candidates planning to take the UTME examination of a well-conceived CBT examination, which the board was consolidating on the gains and feat recorded.
It will be recalled that most national dailies and broadcast outfits had reported on JAMB’s move to modify the CBT test mode into a more user-friendly approach in which only eight keys on the keyboard would be used in picking answers to questions and also in giving commands to the computer, thereby eliminating the problem of, “phobia for the mouse”, which the Registrar, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede had cited as reason for the innovation.
Source: The Guardian online Publication