By Toby Prince
The Registrar, Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, broke down in tears on Saturday in Abuja, as he announced the release of the 2019 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), conducted few weeks ago.
The discovery made during the period of scrutiny of the examination centers was unprecedented and the Registrar was deeply shocked by the extent some candidates went to perfect their cheating in the examination.
Oloyede told journalists in Abuja that JAMB identified a large number of impersonators that specialised in writing UTME for candidates, including most of the tutorial masters that also specialised in recruiting professional writers for their candidates.
He said they use names directly or variants of the name or multiple registrations. In Anambra State, two centres registered large number of impersonating candidates and that led to cancellation of the results and the CBT centres delisted.
“We also tracked the registration centres and the computers used, he said, adding that “Another dimension of impersonation was a futile attempt of defeating the biometric capturing of ten fingers that was introduced in 2017. The fraudsters thought they could beat the system through ‘contributed fingers’, where two or more persons would use their fingers to register for candidates, thinking that any of them would be able to write for such candidates if the system allowed it.
“Another examples were in Aminu Saleh College of Education, Azare, where someone’s fingerprint was discovered in 42 person’s registration, and in Bauchi State University, Gadau, where one person’s fingerprint was traced to the registration of 64 candidates with a view to allowing any of the finger-contributing impersonators to access the examination hall.”
He said the Board went to the extent of interacting with the principal officers of the institution in Azare, and “we appreciated the Council Chairman and Provost of the College whose cooperation led to the confession of the culprit that he contributed fingers in good faith.”
He said the confession, as bad as it was, is good for the Board as, without it, there would have been doubts about the accuracy of the technology deployed to determine and detect the infraction.
He highlighted another case in Borno State where, in Nassara Computer Academy, Maiduguri, 233 candidates had one particular finger included in each of their biometric registration.
He said that JAMB has made representative arrests through the effort of Special Task Force set up by Force Intelligence Bureau (FIB), which assisted JAMB tremendously in tracking the offenders.