2018 UTME: JAMB candidates narrate challenges of broken generator, poor network, others

Candidates writing the JAMB exam at a CBT centre

Some candidates in the ongoing computer cased 2018 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) have complained about the challenges they faced writing their examinations.

A candidate who identified himself as Aliyu told PREMIUM TIMES that during the two hours examination, the generator that supplied electricity to the centre stopped three times.

“The exams was scheduled to commence by 7 a.m. but we couldn’t start until 8 a.m because of thumbprint and screening. We also experienced failure of generator. The generator failed about three times.

“We were expected to spend two hours, but we couldn’t. They kept pressuring us to submit. Many candidates had not finished when the management submitted the exams,” he complained.

However, the proprietor of the institute, Zakari Abdullahi, said the failure of generator had no effect on the exams.

“Of course the generator broke down. But it was fixed. A new generator was brought. Everything went smoothly.

“The students didn’t come on time, which is not our fault. Normally, students were expected to come before seven, the exams is supposed to start by seven. But we didn’t have them. We had to wait,” Mr. Abdullahi said.

At SMS ICT Institute, Nomansland,Kano, the second session of the exams started around 10:30 am instead of 9:00 am as narrated by one candidate who declined to be named.

“My exams slip indicates that I will start by 9:00, but i didn’t start till 10:30,” she claimed.

The manager of the centre, Sani Muhammad, said candidates were directed to arrive one hour to the scheduled time so they could be screened and accredited.

“The first session candidates were asked to come by 7 a.m. and their exams will start by 8:00 am and the span of exams is two hours. It takes thirty minutes to accredit candidates.”

A PREMIUM TIMES reporter in Kano found that the third session of the exams in Vitae Computer Institute, Club Road, Kano scheduled to commence by 1:00 p.m did not start till 2:00 p.m due to network problems.

A candidate who sat in the second session complained that the system failed to recognise his registration until after about 20 minutes.

“When I supplied my registration number, the computer system rejected my number. I complained to one of the staff, it took him almost 20 minutes before he rectified the problem. And they kept putting pressure on candidates to submit. I have 20 questions and about 15 minutes left, when i submitted ,” he said.

A manager in the centre who does not want her name in print said the delay was due to lack of network access to JAMB headquarters.

She denied putting pressure on candidates to submit their exams, noting that all were allowed to submit at their own will as the system timing is programmed, saying when the time is exhausted the computer logs out.

On Friday, the Kano Zonal coordinator, Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Karimatu Abubakar, said the board has created a special centre for visually impaired candidates in Kano.

She said the centre is designed to accommodate candidates from Northern states at Aminu Kano Centre for Democratic Research and Training, Mambayya House.

“I am proud to say JAMB is being inclusive. The Board has made proper and adequate arrangements for visually impaired candidates. They are going to write their exams separately, and they would be provided with basic materials.

“Kano is the centre of all visually impaired candidates from Northern Nigeria. Kano alone has fifty candidates,” she said.

She said over seven thousand candidates are expected to write their exams in twenty-nine CBT centres across Kano State this year.

“We have 29 CBT centres in Kano. Out of this four are in Wudil, two are in Bichi and one in is in Dambatta local government. Meaning that seven CBT centres are outside Kano metropolis. The rest are within Kano Municipal.

“We are expecting about seven thousand candidates to write the exams in Kano State. We run the exams in sessions, morning, mid-day and afternoon sessions,” she added.

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