By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA-The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB has said that the Computer-Based Test adopted in the forthcoming Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) would save the examination body about N5 billion.
Registrar of JAMB, Professor Ishaq Oloyede stated this Tuesday at a press briefing on the training of its examination officials in Abuja.
Oloyede noted that under his watch, JAMB would deploy cost-effective measures to deliver on its statutory mandate.
“We have tried our best as much as we can, taking efficiency as the watchword as far as the conduct of examination is concerned because we believe this country deserve the best. All we have been trying to do is to do things that will not make Nigeria inferior in the comity of examination bodies. All we’ve been trying to do is to find the most efficient way to conduct our examinations,” Oloyede said.
“Instead of spending billions on our examinations, we can spend millions and achieve better results. That is all I have been struggling to do, to make sure that instead of collecting N7 billion and spending N6.8 billion in the conduct of examination, we should be able to save at least N5 billion,” he stressed.
While noting that there are skepticism on the part of some Nigerians about the workings of new innovations, the Registrar said he is optimistic of taking JAMB to the next level, regardless of challenges.
“Yes, some people argue that in Nigeria, there are many variables that you cannot determine. I have strong faith in this country and I believe that whatever works in normal places will work in Nigeria,” he added.
On the 2017 UTME slated to begin on May 13, Oloyede said his team is prepared to conduct a hitch-free examination across all centres of the country. “I and my colleagues in JAMB management have tried our best and have prepared as much as we can. We also believe in our partners, MTN and Airtel which are our two service providers in the conduct of this examination and I want to appeal to them to see this as a national assignment.”
On the antics of fifth columnists bent on pulling him down, Oloyede said he’s fully aware of their mission, noting that only recently; they accused the Board of ‘poor planning and incompetence.’ But for us, what we are out to do is to give the best of our services to this great nation of ours. I need not be the Registrar of JAMB if there would be no change positively.”
He added that the CBT which was adopted a few years ago was actually his initiative while holding sway as Vice Chancellor, University of Ilorin. “CBT started at the University of Ilorin in 2007 and by the grace of God, I was the Vice Chancellor who started it. When JAMB was to start the CBT, it was my Deputy Vice Chancellor who was invited to deliver a lecture on ‘The Roadmap to CBT: The University of Ilorin Example.’”
Meanwhile, the mock test earlier shelved by JAMB is set to hold this Saturday 29th April, 2017 and Oloyede said he’s optimistic the challenges which scuttled the initial exercise would be taken care of this time.