The Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) at the University of Calabar, John Edor, has advised the Joint Admission and Matriculation Examination (JAMB) against publicly ridiculing candidates of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) without conducting thorough investigations. Edor emphasized that resorting to a media trial was not the appropriate approach.
The call for caution comes in light of recent controversies surrounding UTME results, with candidates being accused of tampering with their scores. In 2019, JAMB accused Kingsley Unekwe of altering his UTME result, and in 2021, a 19-year-old candidate was arrested for allegedly manipulating his score. The most recent case involves Miss Mmesoma Ejikeme, a 16-year-old student from Anambra State, who has been accused of result manipulation.
Former Education Minister Oby Ezekwesili has already called for an independent forensic investigation into the matter, highlighting the need to uncover the truth. Similarly, Edor expressed the opinion that relevant agencies should be allowed to conduct a proper investigation. He stated that a thorough examination would determine whether Mmesoma hacked into the JAMB portal or not.
Edor criticized JAMB for making the issue a public discussion without conducting a thorough investigation first. He emphasized that the social media trial was regrettable and initiated by JAMB to disown the student who claimed to have the highest score. He also raised concerns about the security of JAMB’s software, questioning whether it was vulnerable to external invasions or technical glitches.
He said: “The social media trial is regrettable, and it was originated by JAMB to disown the young student who claimed to have the highest score.
“I think that JAMB should be a little bit more circumspect, they should have done due diligence and compliance with due process before bringing it to public space that the candidate forged the result.
“If the candidate forged the report, it would imply that the candidate hacked into the JAMB portal, which in itself, would be an indictment on the security of JAMB software. The software does not have the necessary capacity to withstand external invasion.
“At this point, I would say we should allow the necessary authorities and agencies to follow due process, investigate what actually caused the variation in result, was the software hacked and by whom?
“If it was not hacked, how come there was a difference? Was there a technical glitch on the JAMB software, among other issues?
“However, it will be difficult for me to make a complete statement on this issue until the relevant people have a conclusion.”