The National Examinations Council, (NECO) has said incessant cases of examination malpractice especially impersonation and particularly collusion by supervisors, teachers and school administrators, who ought to be part of the army in fighting the scourge, was a major challenge in the conduct of the exercise.
The Council, therefore called on the Federal Government to formulate a deliberate policy to help promote discipline and a culture of honesty among teachers, school administrators and students.
This was contained in a brief submitted to the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, by the Acting Registrar of NECO, Mr Abubakar Gana, on the mandate and achievements of the Council between May 2018 and September 2019.
Gana also called on the government to prioritise security of examinations just as the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, is provided security during elections. Gana’s appeal come as the menace of examination malpractice continues to hunt public examinations across the country, with NECO recording over 40,000 cases in its June/July 2019 Senior Secondary Certificate Examination, SSCE.
Although NECO acquired 8,000 biometric verification machines before its conduct of the 2019 SSCE, the Registrar said the exam body requires more biometric verification devices to serve its over 16,000 centres and enable it strengthen its efforts towards eliminating identity theft, which is the severest form of examination malpractice.
He however noted that despite several achievements recorded during his tenure there were still challenges which include lack of reading and adherence to guidelines governing the operations.
“This is causing a serious impediment to the successful implementation of the on-going reforms; deliberate failure of school administrators to comply with laid down rules and regulations even where such rules were clearly spelt out for them, constitutes another major challenge,” he said.
Others include dishonesty among some Principals and Proprietors of schools by providing falsified documents of their schools in order to secure accreditation and increasing cost of logistics in the conduct of examinations due to inflation.