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Nigeria's Federal Executive Council approves N200,000 fine or five years imprisonment for examination cheats
| September 05, 2013
An amendment to an Act of the West African Examinations Council, which was approved by Nigeria's Federal Executive Council (FEC), now makes people convicted of examination malpractice subject to five years in prison and/or a N200,000 fine. Speaking to journalists, the Minister of Education, Prof Ruqayyat Rufai, said that the approval gives effect to the revised convention of WAEC, 2003 in Nigeria and that the FEC has directed the Ministry of Justice drive action on the issue. A request submitted to the council sought approval for the enactment of an Act to amend the WAEC Act, CAP W4, Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004 to give effect to the revised convention of WAEC, 2003 in Nigeria. The 2004 Act, “empowers WAEC to take disciplinary action against those who have committed both the offences and penalties for illegally using examination papers and leakage of examination papers.” Section 19(1) of the Act also states, “Such candidate shall not take or be allowed to take or continue the examination; in addition, he shall be prohibited from taking any examination held or conducted by or on behalf of the Council for a period of two years immediately following upon such contraventions. “If a candidate aforesaid has already taken any papers at the examination, his result therefrom shall be cancelled. “In addition, the candidate may be prosecuted and if found guilty, shall be liable on conviction to a fine of N200, 000 or imprisonment for a term of five years or to both such fine and imprisonment.”

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OBJ    Houston, Texas, USA    September 10, 2013
While this is a good first baby step to start addressing poor academic issues in Nigeria, it failed to address the core issues that WAEC has had for decades. These include but not limited to the following:

1. The agency; WAEC must demonstrate that they can competently administer fraud free examination and must be held accountable for any leakages. You can not punish the students while letting go the officials of the WAEC. They must be part of the solution.

2. WAEC must not cancel any student’s examination after it has been taken without any evidence of academic dishonesty. No student should be punished by examination cancellation without evidence of academic fraud, and imprisonment is not the proper punishment.

3. There must be set deadlines on grading and releasing of the reports. This agency has failed the students for decades, and its time it is addressed or be abolished.

4. What is the solution if WAEC continues to fail? I will recommend abolition.

5. JAMB must abolished. Lets to back to the system that lets the universities set their own admission standards. JAMB has degraded the value and quality of knowledge in the country. It has led to many half-educated graduates. The universities can use SAT and/or ACT as admission criteria, and not JAMB. It will pit our students against the world’s best.

6. Parochial schools must be promoted as it used be. Academics was supreme during the great years of parochial intuitions such Bishop Shanahan, Holy Ghost College, Queens College, Kings College, CKC; just to name a few. Takeover by the government killed these institutions especially in the Southeast. We must go back to Parochial schools.

7. Private universities must be encourage, but must have very strong academic requirements to gain admission. Education must be strongly promoted in the country.

This law must address all these issues, and not just fine and imprisonment of candidates
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