The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) on Tuesday, cancelled general cut-off marks for admission into tertiary institutions and allowed the institutions freedom to set their individual minimum benchmark for admission.
The Board took the decision at the 2021 policy meeting which was held virtually and chaired by the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu.
Speaking during the meeting, the Registrar of JAMB Prof. Is-haq Oloyede said some universities such as the University of Maiduguri proposed 150, Usman Dan Fodio University Sokoto proposed 140, Pan Atlantic University proposed 210, University of Lagos 200, Lagos State University190, Covenant University190, Bayero University Kano, 180.
The stakeholders also approved October 29, 2021, as the deadline for the closure of amendments for 2021 admissions.
On the deadline for the closure of admissions, the stakeholders resolved to allow the ministry to decide as they could not agree on the December 31, 2021, deadline for all public institutions and January 31st 2022 for all public institutions.
Stakeholders also adopted the 2021 admission guidelines, which provide that all applications for part-time or full-time programmes for degrees, NCE, OND, and others must be posted only through JAMB.
The meeting approved that for Direct Entry, DE, the maximum score a candidate can present is 6 and the minimum is 2 or E, as required by law.
Speaking on other admission criteria, he said the candidate’s credentials must be uploaded on CAPS and recommended by the institution, JAMB approves and the candidate accepts the offer of admission.
He said if candidates have not accepted an offer, the institution can change the candidate after informing JAMB.
Also approved at the policy were the guidelines that every institution is at liberty to admit candidates based on its own minimum score approved by the institution and the policy meeting.
The meeting also resolved that every institution should maintain its own minimum score as approved by the policy meeting.
According to the stakeholders, the 2021 admissions will be conducted only through CAPS, no institution is allowed to admit candidates without uploading their details on CAPS.
Oloyede further disclosed that for the 2021/2022 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, the board is introducing two new subjects: computer studies and physical and health education, bringing to a total of 25 subjects.
The stakeholders also exempted prison inmates, visually impaired and foreign candidates from sitting for post UTME exercise.
Speaking on the 2020 admissions, Oloyede said out of the 956,809 admission spaces in the 962 higher education institutions in the country about 600,000 have so far been admitted.
While saying there are many admission spaces that have not been filled up in several courses due to lack of qualified candidates, Oloyede said private universities in the country were only able to admit 36,381 candidates out of the 120,938 spaces available to them.
Declaring the policy meeting open, Minister of Education, Adamu, commended JAMB for introducing use of the National Identification Number, NIN, in the registration process for UTME.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Sonny Echono, the minister said the use of NIN drastically reduced examination malpractice in the 2021 exam, adding that the West African Examination Council, WAEC, will also follow a similar path by adopting mandatory use of NIN.
“I am enthused that the last examination recorded the lowest cases of examination irregularities in the history of the Board because those who will normally have exploited the weak links through biometrics infractions had been effectively check-mated with the introduction of NIN by JAMB.
“It is gratifying that the WAEC has decided to follow the path of using NIN to curb examination malpractices. The Ministry is presently considering other ways of using the NIN to uncover some other admissions irregularities and all perpetrators including their collaborators in the institutions would be made to face the consequences. ”
On illegal admissions being conducted by some tertiary institutions, the minister expressed concerns that the government’s directive that all admissions should be done through JAMB’s Central Admissions Processing System, CAPS, is being violated.
He directed JAMB to furnish the government with the list of affected institutions for necessary punishments.
His words: “It is saddening that despite the clear directives at previous policy meetings some institutions still illegally admitted candidates outside CAPS. I consider such act as a direct affront on the system and appropriate sanctions shall be applied on those found to have been in such a disruptive act.
“Similarly, any institution that issued admission letters to candidates outside CAPS will be punished for such gross indiscipline and fraud.
” The consequence of admissions conducted outside of CAPS is grievous. It subjects the candidates to gloom future as a nemesis of illegal admission awaits them at the completion of study when it will be impossible to take full advantage of the acquired candidates.
“As a demonstration of our resolve, I have directed JAMB to bring forward for appropriate sanctions, the list of all institutions involved in the violation of the directive of government which was was personally conveyed by me at the 2018 policy meeting in Gbongan, Osun State.”
Lagos Assembly moves to end open grazing, considers VAT bill
The Lagos State House of Assembly says the Prohibition of Open Cattle Grazing Bill, when passed will ensure harmonious relationships between herders and farmers in the state.
The assembly made this known after the bill was read on the floor of the house for the second time, by the Acting Clerk, Olalekan Onafeko, at plenary on Monday.
It said the bill would also protect the environment of the state and the South-west zone.
The House also read for the first and second time, the state’s Value Added Tax (VAT) bill, and asked the Committee on Finance, which was handling it to report back on Thursday.
The Speaker of the House, Mudashiru Obasa, who described the Prohibition of Open Cattle Grazing Bill’ as timely, thereafter, committed the bill to the committee on agriculture for public hearing.
The speaker also suggested that the bill should make provision for the registration of herders, and prepare them for ranching.
“Allocating parcel of land is not enough, but there should also be training for those who will go into ranching, as ranching is expensive and requires adequate preparation,” he added.
Concerning the VAT bill, the speaker said it would further lead to an increase in revenue and infrastructural development.
”This is in line with fiscal federalism that we have been talking about,” he said.
Mr Obasa said the VAT law, when passed, would help the state meet challenges in its various sectors.
He also urged the Lagos State government to do everything legally possible, to ensure the judgment of the Federal High Court, Port Harcourt, was sustained even up to the Supreme Court.
The speaker lamented a situation where about N500 billion would be generated from the state, while N300 billion was generated from other South-west states, but paltry amounts would be disbursed to Lagos State in return.
Mr Obasa said it was an opportunity for the state to emphasise again, the need for the consideration of true federalism.
Speaking earlier on the bill on open grazing, Bisi Yusuff (Alimosho 1) lamented that farmers had continuously become afraid to visit their farms, thus causing shortage of food.
Mr Yusuff also said many farmers had become indebted, as they now found it difficult to pay back loans they secured.
His position was supported by Kehinde Joseph (Alimosho 2) who noted that the bill would ensure peaceful coexistence, reduce crime and help to guide the activities of herders.
Olumoh Lukeman (Ajeromi-Ifelodun 1) suggested that the high court should be made to handle cases from enforcement of the bill when passed, or that the state should establish special courts for such purpose.
Also, Gbolahan Yishawu (Eti-Osa 1) expressed support for the bill, noting that it would give a level of security to the state and help reduce economic losses.
He added that Lagos had 250 hectares of land in Ikorodu and another 750 hectares in Epe for ranching.
David Setonji (Badagry II), said: “There was a time we went on oversight function in a school here in Lagos. We were embarrassed by cattle. We had to wait for the herder to move the cattle before we embarked on our oversight function.”
Mr Setonji suggested a collaboration between the Neighbourhood Safety Corps and the police, in the implementation of the law when passed and assented to.
Other lawmakers who contributed during the plenary were Adedamola Kasunmu (Ikeja II), Rasheed Makinde Ifako Ijaiye II), and Sanni Okanlawon (Kosofe I).
Ngige: FG to recover millions wrongly paid to 588 doctors
The federal government says it is planning to recover “millions of naira wrongly paid to 588 medical doctors” across the country.
While fielding questions from state house correspondents, Chris Ngige, minister of labour and employment, said the affected doctors wrongly benefitted from the medical residency training fund meant for a particular category of doctors.
The minister said the names of the doctors were uncovered after a scrutinisation of the 8000 names submitted by chief medical directors of federal government health institutions for the training programme.
Ngige said a substantial amount of the money has been refunded by some of the affected doctors while efforts are being intensified to recover the remaining balance.
He said the delay in making the refund by the affected doctors is holding back the residency fund payment by the government.
“Ministry of health has gotten the list of doctors who supposedly are to benefit from the medical residency training fund,” he said.
“Total submission of about 8000 names were gotten and the ministry of health is scrutinising them.
“We have done the first round of scrutinisation and they will now compare what they have with the Post-Graduate Medical College and the chief medical directors who submitted the names.
“The Association of Resident Doctors, in each of the tertiary centres, worked with the CMDs to produce those names, but now that the names are being verified.
“We discovered that about 2000 names shouldn’t be there because they don’t have what is called Postgraduate Reference Numbers of National Postgraduate Medical College and (or) that of the West African Postgraduate Medical College.
“So, this is it and that is the only thing holding back the residency fund payment because it is there already for incurred expenditure has been done by the finance minister and it’s in the accountant-general’s office.”
“So, once they verify the authenticity of those they are submitting, the Accountant-General will pay.
“We are doing that verification because we do not want what happened last time in 2020 to reoccur.
“In 2020, the submitted names didn’t come through the appropriate source, which is the Postgraduate Medical College and payment was affected and it was discovered that about 588 persons, who were not resident doctors benefited from such money.
“They are now finding it difficult to make the full refund. But they have to refund that money. Some are refunding, but there is no full consideration of the account.
“That account has to be reconciled to enable the accountants pay the next round of funding for 2021.”
The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has been on strike for a month over “irregular payment of salaries”, among other issues.
Efforts by stakeholders, including the national assembly, to mediate between the federal government and the resident doctors have not yielded results.
Insecurity: Kaduna suspends weekly market, bans livestock transportation
The Kaduna State government has suspended trading at the popular weekly Kawo market.
The order on Thursday came days after the government suspended similar markets in five other local government areas of the state.
Kawo market is one of the largest weekly markets in Kaduna North.
It is located in the same area as the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), the Hassan Usman Katsina House popularly know as State House and the Legislative Quarters.
According to a statement by the state commissioner of Internal Security and Homeland Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, on Thursday, “the Kawo weekly market which usually holds every Tuesday in Kaduna North LGA has been suspended with immediate effect”.
“The Government of Kaduna State wishes to highlight that the previous directives suspending weekly markets, and selling of petrol in jerrycans in Birnin Gwari, Giwa, Chikun, Igabi and Kajuru LGAs, as well as banning the felling of trees for timber, firewood and charcoal and other commercial purposes in Birnin Gwari, Kachia, Kajuru, Giwa, Chikun, Igabi and Kauru LGAs, are still in force.
“Citizens are hereby informed that all these directives will be vigorously enforced by security agencies.”
Also, the statement said the state government banned the transportation of livestock.
“The ban also prohibits the transportation of livestock into Kaduna state from other states. Both bans take effect immediately, from today 2nd September 2021.
“The government also wishes to reiterate that the transportation of donkeys into the state is a criminal offence and anyone found engaging in this will be prosecuted accordingly.”
Kawo Market ban
Many traders who spoke with news men in Kaduna welcomed the suspension of the weekly Kawo market.
Apart from the larger weekly trading, trading also takes place daily among residents of the neighbourhood.
Danladi Bala, a grain transporter, said the state government’s decision to suspend weekly trading in the market is right.
“Yes, we are traders here, but the recent suspension of weekly markets in other local government areas will make the Kawo market the target for criminal activities. They will all come here. It is a wise decision from the government,” he said.
Hajiya Mama, a trader, also said she was not suprised by the announcement.
“I trade in the market, but in the last two weeks we have been witnessing the influx of traders with large commodities.
“With the closure of weekly markets in Zamfara and other part of the state, this market will be an option for good or bad traders,” she said.
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