Malpractices – WAEC Set to Release Withheld Results, Punishes Offenders

Earlier in November 2021, WAEC had announced that the results of 170,146 candidates were withheld in connection with various reported cases of examination malpractice.

Some candidates who sat the West African Senior School Certificate Examinations conducted between 2021 and 2022 by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) but whose results were withheld over suspected cases of irregularities and now exonerated will have their results released “latest by Friday, April 15, 2022.”

The acting head of the public affairs department of Nigeria’s office of WAEC, Moyosola Adeyegbe, confirmed this in a telephone interview with PREMIUM TIMES’ reporter on Monday.

The confirmation was a follow-up to an earlier communique issued on Sunday by the examination body, stating the resolutions of the Nigeria Examinations Committee (NEC), WAEC’s highest decision-making organ on examination-related matters in the country.

The committee, the communique noted, had met between Thursday, April 7, and Friday, 8, to “consider matters relating to the conduct of the West African Senior School Examination (WASSCE) for school and private candidates.”

“Yes, for those whose results will be released among the candidates, they can begin to check from Thursday and latest by Friday,” Mrs Adeyegbe, said.

NEC’s deliberation, resolutions

WAEC said the committee’s meeting, which was the 73rd in the series, and chaired by the director of basic and secondary education at the federal ministry of education, Binta Abdulkadri, deliberated extensively on reports on irregularity, special cases and appeals for clemency arising from the conduct of 2021 WASSCE for school candidates, 2021 WASSCE for private candidates (second series), and 2022 WASSCE for private candidates (first series).

The examination body said decisions were taken not only on erring candidates but also on schools found guilty of examination malpractices.

It added that individual supervisors and invigilators found culpable of aiding and abetting such vices were also recommended for punishment.

Meanwhile, depending on the category and degree of the offence committed by the candidates, WAEC noted that some of them have been barred from sitting any of its examinations for two years.

The communique read in part: “In the course of considering the various reported cases of malpractice, the committee, after diligent deliberations, approved appropriate sanctions in all established cases of malpractice, as prescribed by the Rules and Regulations governing the conduct of the Council’s examinations. It authorised that the entire results of candidates proven to have been involved in malpractice cases which attract the penalty of Cancellation of Entire Results (CER) be cancelled, while subject results of candidates proven to have been involved in malpractice cases which attract the penalty of Cancellation of Subject Results (CSR) be similarly cancelled.

“Furthermore, some candidates will also suffer other sanctions such as being barred from sitting the Council’s examinations for two years.”

Meanwhile, WAEC said the Committee also approved that schools involved in mass cheating be de-recognised.

“Some supervisors that were found wanting in the discharge of their examination duties will be formally reported to their employers and blacklisted while some invigilators will also be reported to the appropriate authorities for disciplinary action.

“The resolutions of the Committee will be implemented without delay and the affected candidates and examination centres duly informed by the Council. However, the results of candidates who were exonerated by the committee will be released without further delay,” the communique added.

Low enrolment of special needs candidates

The committee commended the council for the thorough investigations it conducted on the reported malpractice cases presented during the meeting as it applauded the ministries of education in some states that sanctioned erring invigilators and supervisors reported to have been involved or aided examination malpractice of any kind.

It, however, observed that there was a decline in the enrollment of candidates with special needs, and charged the council to research and proffer solutions to the challenge and continue to make provisions to cater for such candidates.

Condemnation

The communique further noted that the committee frowned at the actions of some state governments and stakeholders questioning the sanctions meted on erring candidates, schools and persons involved in examination malpractice.

The communique added: “WAEC should be allowed to continue with the job of providing quality assessment to the Nigerian child without any hindrance; WAEC should continue to sanction examination malpractice, no matter whose ox is gored.

“All states, schools and individuals should continue to respect and obey the impartial decisions of the Nigeria Examinations Committee (NEC) for the benefit of education in Nigeria; cases of harassment of WAEC state officials by agents of state governments should be reported to the Honourable Minister of Education,” NEC said.

Background

WAEC had on March 21,,2022 announced the release of the council’s 2022 first series WASSCE for private candidates withholding the results of 347 candidates in connection with various reported cases of examination malpractice.

In a statement signed by Mrs Adeyegbe, the council said the number represented 4.84 per cent of the total number of candidates who sat the examination.

Earlier in November 2021, when it released the results of the year’s May/June school candidates’ diet, the examination body announced that the results of 170,146 candidates, representing 10.9 per cent of the total candidates, were withheld “in connection with various reported cases of examination malpractice.”

The head of the Nigeria office of WAEC, Patrick Areghan, who announced the results, had decried the activities of those he said were behind some identified rogue websites.

“Of great worry here are the activities of rogue-website operators and some other social media platforms, who post-examination questions online immediately after the commencement of the paper being administered. The increasing use of cell phones in the examination hall, despite the existing ban, and organised cheating in some schools, are other big concerns. All the cases are being investigated and reports of the investigations will be presented to the appropriate Committee of the Council for determination in due course,” Mr Areghan had said at the time.

SOURCE: ALLAFRICA

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