Members of the House of Representatives yesterday urged the Federal Ministry of Education to cut the cost of Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) application forms.
The House also proposed that the cost be reviewed downward to about 50 per cent from the current N7000.
The House, while adopting a motion by James Faleke (APC, Lagos) urged the Federal Ministry of Education to ensure that the cost of the other ‘ancillary forms’ for changes must be free or at the very barest minimum of N500.
Moving the motion, Mr Faleke noted that the JAMB remitted N7.8 billion to the Federal Government being excess of the N12 billion made from sales of Unified Tertiary Examinations (UTME) application forms for University Admission in 2017 at the rate of N7,500.
“This excludes incomes from the sales of other forms such as Change of Course Forms and Change of University Forms at the rate of N5, 000.00 each,” he said.
He said an estimated 250,000 candidates purchased the UTME forms, bringing the income from sales of the forms to about N2.4 billion per year.
“The cost does not include the Post-UMTE Examinations that are conducted by Universities at an average cost of N2, 500 per candidate excluding the expenses made on logistics,” he added.
He said thus JAMB had a surplus of N7 billion budget in 2017, “meaning that the sum under consideration is from sales of forms only, making the Board a profit making venture to the detriment of educational and social development of the country”.
He also noted the increase in the number of universities from 12 at inception of JAMB in 1798, with less than 50,000 candidates to over 400 Tertiary Institutions with more than 1.7 million candidates writing the exams. He said indices show only about 50 per cent of those who wrote the examinations were admitted in the universities as at 2017.
He reminded the parliament that JAMB as a government agency is not set up for profit making but “to promote educational development of the young citizens in pursuit of their professional careers”.
“The proliferation of universities to 120, 83 Polytechnics, 82 Colleges of Education and other Tertiary Institutions under JAMB purview is portraying it as a profit making venture.”
He described as alarming, the allegation of the huge sum of money missing from JAMB vaults, burning of scratch cards, lending out money made from sales of application forms, conversion of proceeds from sales of application forms to loans and image ’empowerment’ funds to private individuals and fictitious by stories by the officials of the board.
The House subsequently resolved to mandate its committee on basic education to ensure compliance and report back in two weeks.
Bello’s Gunmen After My Life, Family -Kogi Dep Gov
Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Elder Simon Achuba yesterday alleged that the governor of the state has sent gunmen after his life.
Acbuba called on the inspector General of Police, the Department of State Services (DSS), the Army and other security personnel to safeguard his life, family members and his aides.
Achuba, who spoke with newsmen at his official residence in Lokoja said, “From all information at my disposal, the governor has mobilised gunmen to attack me.
“I want the police, SSS, IGP to know that if anything should happen to me, my family and aides, the governor should be held responsible.”
The deputy governor likewise called on the President to beam his searchlight on the state.
LGAs Responsible For Farmers, Herdsmen Clashes In Nigeria -UN
Zebulon Takwa, Peace and Development Adviser, Office of the UN Resident Coordinator in Nigeria, says poor Local Government administration is largely responsible for farmers-herdsmen clashes in Nigeria
Takwa, who gave the position in an interview with newsmen yesterday in Abuja, expressed concerns over “weak operational structures at the local government level’’.
He said that issues that were supposed to be addressed by local administration authority were left unattended to over a long period.
The UN official noted that most of the issues that escalated to crises ought to have been resolved at the local level by the authorities, traditional and religious leaders.
He decried the situation where structures for such prompt amicable settlement were not effective enough to prevent conflicts.
Takwa condemned the situation where most local government officials migrated to urban centres instead of concentrating on their primary responsibilities of settling crises, developing infrastructure and social amenities, among others.
Reprisal Killing: Taraba Police, Tiv, Junkun Differ On Casualities
The Police Command in Taraba State has said that only one individual was killed in what appeared to be a revenge for the alleged murder of a Junkun man yesterday.
While the Tiv claimed that no fewer than nine of their kinsmen were killed in Takum town, Takum Local Government Area of Taraba State on Tuesday, the Police said the figure was not true.
Takum is the hometown of Governor DariusIshaku who turned 65 today.
Multiple sources in Takum said trouble started yesterday morning when a Jukun man was killed on his farm along Takum-Wukari road, and irate Jukun youths in Takum went on the rampage, killing at least eight people in the town.
A resident of Takum, Mr. Nathaniel Jato, in a telephone interview with our Correspondent said the eight people killed in Takum town were all Tiv resident in the town.
“We counted at least eight dead bodies around General Hospital Junction and Zenith Bank around the Wukari roundabout.
“We were told that many people were killed around Rimi Primary school area, but there is tension, so we can’t go there.
“The Caretaker Chairman of Takum Local Government Council, ShibanTikari, has assured us that the situation will not escalate, but I am afraid the situation might degenerate if adequate security measures are not put in place,” he lamented.
Jato, who said there was threat that their houses would be attacked in the night, called on Governor Darius Ishaku and security authorities to quickly restore peace in the area to pave way for proper investigation of the matter.