OrderPaperToday – Nigeria’s House of Representatives on Wednesday, urged the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) to establish more rigorous standards for the administration and evaluation of O’ Level examinations in Nigeria.
It also mandated its Committee on Basic Education and Services to investigate the incessant leakages of the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) questions. as well as repeated and unconscionable cancellation of examinations by the West African Examinations Council in Nigeria and report back within Four (4) weeks for further legislative action.
This resolution followed a motion raised during plenary by Benjamin Kalu, member representing Bende federal constituency, Abia state.
Raising the motion, Kalu noted that the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) is the body responsible for the administration, monitoring, supervision, and evaluation of the West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) in Nigeria.
He further noted that WASSCE is the foremost O’ Level Examination in Nigeria, which is usually taken by over 1.5 million candidates every year.
“Recall that on September 15, 2021, in a notice issued by its Public Affairs Department, WAEC cancelled Physics 2 & 1 and Business Management 2 & 1 Examinations, which were originally scheduled for Wednesday, September 15, 2021, citing leakage of some examination papers on social media as a reason for the cancellation”.
“Also recall that WAEC has, at several times in the past, cancelled examinations for similar reasons including the cancellation of Literature in English Papers taken by private candidates in 2021″, Kalu said.
The lawmaker said that the above reasons do not warrant cancellation of an examination of such magnitude and such repeated cancellations are indicative of ineptitude on the part of the examining body.
According to him, WAEC spends over N1.5 billion annually to conduct the West African Senior School Certificate Examinations and according to Areghan Patrick, Head of WAEC National Office in Nigeria, the organization was operating at a deficit of N7 billion.
He expressed concern that the cancellation and subsequent rescheduling of exams by WAEC results in wastage and incurs avoidable expenses to the country which is already burdened with debts.
He further worried that if urgent action is not taken to check the inefficiencies of WAEC, improve the security of O’ Level examinations and ultimately put an end to the incessant cancellation of exams.
Nigeria’s education system will further deteriorate while reminding the House of Representatives of its mandate to check inefficiencies and wastefulness in the Executive as clearly stated in Sections 88 and 89 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
According to the Global Youth Development Index, Nigeria currently ranks 161 of 181 Countries in youth education and employment.