WASSCE holds, WAEC faults rumoured paper leakage, exam suffers delay

AS the West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination began across the country on Monday, the West African Examination Council  dismissed claims in some quarters that the Mathematics questions leaked.

It was gathered that  Mathematics questions and answers were being sold online.

Describing the question papers sold in some places as fake, WAEC said the fake question paper was cloned by scammers, who used it to deceive gullible candidates.

Head of public Affairs, WAEC, Demianus Ojijeogu, who spoke on the matter, said, “It was a fake question paper cloned by scammers to prey on gullible candidates.”

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In Rivers, the state Commissioner for Education, Prof. Kaniye Ebeku, on Monday apprehended the principal of Community Secondary School, Ogbogoro, Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, for allegedly collecting illegal levies from students to aide malpractice as the West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination commenced.

Ebeku said sanctions awaited schools involved in irregularities and examination malpractice.

Apart from the principal whose name was not provided, one of his teachers, identified simply as Peter, was also indicted.

Ebeku said the two men had been handed over to officials of the State Senior Secondary Schools Board for further investigation.

He said, “We received information that there is some form of arrangements by some elements in order to allow malpractice; but we won’t allow such to happen. We will investigate the Ogbogoro incident because we have zero tolerance for malpractice and corruption.”

He, however, expressed satisfaction with the level of compliance to the COVID-19 protocols by schools visited on Monday.

Meanwhile, in Lagos, a visit to some schools around revealed that the guidelines were adhered to.

An invigilator in a secondary school in Ojodu Berger, said, “In the past, we used one hall for WASSCE, but today, we used eight halls and we maintained the two-metre distance.”

A candidate who tested positive for COVID-19 in Gombe State on Monday took his first paper in the ongoing WASSCE from an isolation centre.

The unnamed male candidate sat for Mathematics under the supervision of an invigilator who was fully kitted in a Personal Protective Equipment.

The Gombe State Public Health Emergency Operations Centre disclosed these in a message posted on its Twitter handle, @GombePHEOC, on Monday.

The message reads partly, “A final year student of GSSS Gombe tested positive for COVID-19 and was isolated yesterday (Sunday); today (Monday), he is taking Mathematics while ensuring his invigilator is well protected.”

The tweet attracted commendation from many Twitter users, including the Director-General, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu.

Ihekweazu responded via his Twitter handle, @Chikwe_I, “Good work by our colleagues in #Gombe.

 “There are many exceptional colleagues, quietly pushing to make or country work. #Thankyou #keeppushing.”

Meanwhile, the examination was said to be hitch-free in Katsina State.

One of our correspondents reported that examination started in schools he visited around 9.30am.

The state Commissioner for Education, Badamosi Lawal, who also led a team to monitor the examination, was quoted in a statement by the education ministry spokesman, Mallam Salisu Kerau, to have expressed satisfaction.

Also in Oyo State, the examination was conducted amid strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols.

However, in some of schools in the state, the examination was characterised by late arrival of examination materials.

At the Methodist Secondary School, Favors, Bodija, the Principal, who is also the Oyo State President of the All Nigeria Confederation of Principals of Secondary Schools, Mr Ajadi  Akinbola, said, “Buckets, soap and sanitizers are available, as well as infrared thermometer. Social distancing also enhances the integrity of the examination.”

Copyright PUNCH.

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