JAMB, OTHERS take steps to lull outcry over “Immoral Textbooks”

(Last Updated On: October 5, 2017)

By James, Michael Igiri

Following a petition by the national body of the Parent Teacher Association (NAPTAN)B against some
recommended textbooks for candidates by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB)
and the National Examination Council (NECO), JAMB authorities have moved to amend some
portions of its book, In dependence, currently being use for the Use of English Test in the Unified
Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) considered “immoral”.
At a meeting convened by JAMB and with attendance from representatives of the petitioning
institutions as well as the national president of the Parent Teachers Association (NAPTAN), Alhaji
Haliru Danjuma, as well as other stakeholders, the board’s Registrar Prof. Ishaq Oloyede admitted
that, In Dependence replaced the originally recommended book, Last Days at Forcados High School,
by A.H Mohammed, which was to be used by UTME candidates for a period of four years.
“Examiners felt that after two years of using the book, there were no questions that would be set,
that had not been set. The content had been exhausted but the duration of time that JAMB signed
with the publisher had not been exhausted. That was why we decided to use another book as a
substitute from thesame publisher” He said.
The Parent Teacher Association (PTA) of Crescent Schools, Victoria Island, Lagos had petitioned the
Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, JAMB, and Federal Ministry of Education over the use
of some have termed “morally corrupt” textbooks by candidates sitting for the UTME, the Basic
Education Certificate Examination, and pupils in junior secondary school 1.
The petition which was jointly signed by the Head of School, Alhaja Fatimah Mahmud Oyekan and
the Chairman of the school’s PTA, Alhaji Aliyu Gudaji, had accused NECO and JAMB of using some
morally corrupt textbooks for their examinations.
Apart from In Dependence (written by Sarah Ladipo Mayinka), the petitioners also identified The
Precious Child (by Queen O. Okweshine), and The Tears of a Bride (by Oyekunle Oyedeji), which were
recommended by NECO as books that “glamorise acts of indecency such as rape, violence,
kidnapping, and sexualisation of knowledge”.
They accused the writers of using vulgar languages to describe open sexual scenes that could breed
rape and other forms of abuses among the innocent pupils.
The registrar revealed he had earlier opposed the recommendation of the book on the ground that
it lacked the basic moral and ethical standards for students, he however stated that that there was
little he could do since the agreement with the publishers, Cassava Republic was signed by his
predecessor and still subsisted.
He however pointed out that the examining body is not keen on renewing the agreement with the
publisher, adding,
“We have made up our minds that we are going to be referring our recommended textbooks to NAL
in the future for assessment.”

Already, JAMB has contacted the leadership of the Nigerian Academy of Letters (NAL) to propose
amendments to the book deemed immoral by stakeholders in the sector.