My son just finished writing his JAMB exam which started today at 6am. Before today, I’ve been praying so hard that nothing should go wrong because he had narrated a few bad experiences his friends had in the exam hall.
Samuel wrote his JAMB computer based examination on 11th March, 2015. The time was scheduled for 6am and the examination centre was Chamscity, Garki, Area 11, Abuja. The exam which was delayed, later commenced sometime past 8am. Samuel tried to log in his personal details…examination number and seat number…but couldn’t.
That took some time out of his examination timing. His invigilator finally had his seat changed to one which had a functional computer system. So he logged in his examination details and finally settled down to answering his exam questions.
Somewhere in the middle of his examination, he experienced network problems. His questions were taking forever to load. After some time, it became obvious the server was faulty . His system went off while he still had 30 minutes to finish. Other candidates in the hall who were also cut off before time, protested violently to the invigilators. While things got ugly, Samuel in his usual quiet manner, simply walked out. He never got a makeup test.
Miracle wrote his JAMB computer based examination, the very next day on 12th March, 2015. His examination centre was also Chamscity, but this time, scheduled for 10am. He arrived his centre at about 6am and waited for four hours. The examination finally kicked off around 11am. Although, other candidates in the hall were complaining about one technical difficulty or the other, Miracle wrote his examinations quite freely.
He was well into writing his fourth paper…Economics, when the server tripped off all the systems in his centre. When this glitch occurred, Miracle has a clean one hour left on his system before his time was up. The candidates all protested and a civil defence officer was called to control the situation. The officer threatened to release fire on them with his weapon. In spite of this, the candidates still protested and refused to go. The centre’s administration resulted to pretence and deceit. They successfully lured the over 400 candidates to the ground floor and made them write down their registration and seat numbers. Afterwards, they were made to thumbprint on some papers , which they thought would enable them write a makeup exam. The next exam was scheduled for 1:30pm that same day, but they made fresh candidates start the examinations, while Miracle and the other candidates were then driven home by security officials.
Apart from my sons two friends who narrated their ordeal to me, I also read a story an aggrieved JAMB candidate sent to Laila’s Blog via email confirming that JAMB may have succeeded in destroying so many kids’ destinies this year. The candidate wrote:
“Goodday Laila, I wrote my JAMB exam on the 12th of March 2015 which was scheduled for 6am but was written 8am at “G*** l**** School ***** ICT centre Aba, #45 D*** road off N*** road by east, Aba, Abia State”.
Laila, can you believe we were asked to pay one thousand naira for a seat and some money “For EXPO” (answers). This is so unfair. Just because I refused paying, when my computer went off I called the invigilators attention. He ignored me severally. My computer went off 3times and came on before it finally went off. I had 94 minutes left, I could have finished my mathematics, I was at number 10, leaving 40 Questions unanswered. You know the gravity of this over (80marks)?
Am so annoyed Laila. I prepared hard for this exam, this could cost me one year again if I don’t pass, I’m calling on the JAMB REGISTRAR to look into this. These invigilators are greedy, these jamb invigilators are corrupt, they are actually the problems we have in this country…”
After reading these gory experiences, my heart was in my mouth for my boy. So I decided to do what I know best. The night before, I went down on my knees and constructed the seat my son will seat on and the system he used for the exam through fervent prayers. In the morning, I simply spoke the Word on his head and gave him a charge for victory.
He came back to say his system didn’t go off and he completed his exams one hour before his time was up. I could shout “yay!!” and sleep peacefully this night, right? Wrong! While I’m indebted to God for answering my prayer, Samuel and Miracle are also like my sons. These are boys who visit my home often and I can’t help but feel sad that this happened to them. I feel the need to give them a voice. Not just them but the thousands of boys and girls who suffered the same fate as them in the the exam hall.
Professor Dibu Ojerinde is the current Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB. He is a fine educational administrator and a professor of Tests and Measurement. I believe he introduced this laudable idea of a computer-based examination in line with modern global practices. Yes, why must Nigeria be left out of this technological advancement?
So what went wrong? Could it have been due to power failure? Whatever it is, these kids should not be made to suffer for the lapses and setbacks of JAMB’s administration. Please Mr. Registrar Sir, I’m going on my knees with other aggrieved Nigerian mothers to beg you to look into this matter with utmost urgency.
Just like Laila said…and I agree with her…if it were a student caught with ‘expo’ you wouldn’t hesitate to prosecute such student by canceling their result. So give the affected students makeup exams using glitch-free systems.