JAMB scraps mop-up UTME; insists on no biometrics, no exams policy

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says it will no longer conduct mop-up examinations for candidates of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) who are not biometrically verified.

In its weekly bulletin on Monday in Abuja, JAMB said the move was to further strengthen the noose around examination malpractice.

“The board has decided that the era whereby some candidates will present themselves at the examination venue and claim difficulty to be biometrically verified and expect the system to allow them to sit for the examination is gone for good,” it said.

Recalling that the mop-up examination was introduced in 2017, the board said it had assessed the impact of the process and concluded that candidates must be verified to sit examinations.

“Consequently, the management of the board has regrettably resolved that all candidates must be verified to sit for their examination as there will be no more mop-ups UTME for whatever reason.

“To cater for the few that may have genuine cases of inability to be captured, such candidates are to clearly indicate such difficulty from the point of registration.

“This is so that they can be assigned to a centre situated within the National headquarters of the board for close monitoring,” it said.

The bulletin noted that the measure was not only to sanitise the examination process but also to ensure that the hard-earned reputation of the board was not impugned.

JAMB said that the decision emanated from the management’s rigorous review of the 2022 UTME exercise with the need to close all loopholes noticed during the examination.

“No candidate of the UTME will be allowed to sit for its examination without first being biometrically verified. All 10 fingers of the candidate must be captured at the point of registration.

“To combat the menace of examination malpractice, the board has taken full advantage of technology by introducing, among others, biometric capturing of a candidate’s 10 fingers during UTME registration.

“This is to ensure that there is a convincing match between the fingerprints captured and those presented by the candidate at the examination venue,” it said.

The board said that any scenario other than the above was an invitation to the examination security breach.

It said the management had scheduled a five-day annual retreat from September 18 to September 23 to review and assess its performance in all facets of its operational processes, including the 2022 UTME.

“This is with a view to appraising the challenges faced and fashion strategies to addressing them, while charting a way forward,” JAMB said.