ADDRESS BY THE HONOURABLE MINISTER OF EDUCATION, MALLAM ADAMU ADAMU AT THE INTERNATIONAL SUMMIT ON EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE ORGANIZED BY THE WEST AFRICAN EXAMINATIONS COUNCIL (WAEC) ON 19TH OCTOBER, 2017 AT THE ACADEMY INN AND MULTI-PURPOSE HALLS, LAGOS, NIGERIA
It is a privilege to be here to declare open the West African Examinations Council’s International Summit on the theme, Examination Malpractice: The Contemporary Realities and Antidotes.
Examination malpractice has become a worrisome challenge to the West African sub-region. It assumed a criminal and dangerous dimension with the arrival of social media and smart phones. It is surprising how desperate the misguided candidates, their adult collaborators and most shocking, some school authorities and even parents carry out this evil act with the aid of fraudulent website operators.
This illegal act by candidates before, during and after examinations to attain success cheaply and easily drives them to criminal levels in order to achieve their inordinate ambition thereby, rendering the worth of the examinations invalid. My job here today is to declare the summit open, but it would not be out of place for me to lend my voice to this burning issue as it is the concern of Nigerian Government to stamp out corruption in its totality. Examination malpractice is a form of corruption.
Ladies and Gentlemen, it is worthy of note that, education is a key priority of Mr. President’s agenda in recognition of its potency for advancement in social, economic, cultural, political and technological development. The main objective of our own educational system is to equip students with requisite knowledge and skills to enable them realise their potential and become globally competitive. This training demands periodic assessment and evaluation in the form of tests and examinations in order to determine the level of knowledge and competence of learners.
The Federal Ministry of Education on its part has made access to quality education one of its major objectives in order to develop and enhance skills and competence of its citizens so as to function optimally in diverse sectors of the economy.
The Nigerian government is worried by the rising incidence of examination malpractice in the country as this has consistently remained a bane of our educational system. Our examination halls have become arenas for gross misconduct, students and their collaborators have developed all kinds of dubious ways of cheating in order to pass examinations.
The Federal Ministry of Education in Nigeria will continue to intensify her efforts in building students’ self-confidence and inculcate in them the virtues of hard work by monitoring activities and enforcing the activities of clubs and societies in our schools. We will not relent in our public enlightenment campaigns in sensitizing the society on the dangers of examination malpractice and its negative effect on national identity and development.
Continuous training and re-training of teachers will continue to be a major focus of the Nigerian government. However, perpetrators of examination malpractice will be prosecuted when caught and the law will take its full course to curb this menace.
Ladies and Gentlemen, let me use this medium to call on all member countries that make up the West African Examinations Council to intensity campaign against examination malpractice. It is indeed worrisome that virtually all levels of education in Africa are affected by this menace. It is disheartening that some staff of the Council are equally guilty of perpetrating this evil as examination questions cannot leak to the public without the knowledge and collaboration of the handlers of such materials.
Finally, on behalf of the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I welcome you all to Nigeria and I wish you a fruitful deliberation. I also pray that we find a lasting solution to this menace of examination malpractice in the West African Sub-Region. It is on this note that I declare this summit open.
Thank you for listening, may God bless you.