A faction of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has given support to the controversial cut-off marks introduced by the Joint Admission and Matriculations Board (JAMB).
In a statement issued on Monday, factional president of the association, Aruna Khadire acknowledged that the cut-off marks as agreed by stakeholders at policy meeting had generated much debate with another faction of NANS making comments he viewed as uninformed and embarrassing to the generality of the Nigerian students.
Khadire said NANS was invited to “this very important meeting and our view is that we welcome this development especially the introduction of the Central Admissions Processing System (CAPS) which has provision for candidates to track their admission and raise queries when they feel cheated. This we believe will promote transparency, accountability and fairness. A system that allows candidates to check the admission flow to see who the institutions admit into the programme they also applied for with the view of seeing if a candidate with less scores is admitted and immediately call the attention of the relevant regulatory body is an initiative by JAMB that should be applauded.
“On the cut-off marks, we maintain that the various submissions were obtained from the institution in line with the spirit of allowing them to exercise their powers as given to their Senate and Academic Boards to determine the parameter for admissions to their institutions. JAMB has demonstrated enormous responsibility in ensuring that the right thing is done. Looking at the cut of marks as submitted by the institutions one will certainly agree that it will not lower the quality of education as quality is a function of number and institutions with over seventy per cent of the total candidates submitted cut off marks above even the previous year’s 180.”
Khadire urged the general public to note that all over the world universities were ranked differently with the ‘A’s and the ‘B’s and so on. This, he said, could only be achieved in a healthy competitive environment where the admission and labour markets determined the rating of institutions.
Khadire’s faction of NANS also urged JAMB Registrar to always ensure that the media was adequately informed of such policy before its pronouncement to avoid wrong and misleading information.
“Perception is very important in policy development. The general understanding was that once you have 120 that you can attend any university of your choice. In fact looking at the institutional submissions, not more than five universities submitted cut off marks of 120 and Nigerians know why, and where these universities are standing in ranking. The student body is only calling on the relevant agencies of government to monitor the implementation of this policy to ensure that there are no abuses.
“We equally call on the Inspector General of Police to immediately arrest Mr. Chinoso Obasi and his group who are parading themselves as NANS officials. They are impostors and never represent the interest of Nigerian students. I am the duly, responsible elected NANS President. The same Obasi was arrested at the National Assembly for the same impersonation and he is now at it again.
“Let me inform the public that the 21st Century Nigerian student is equipped and intellectually wise to support and advice government to achieve desired results. We are determined to see that education is developed to the same level as obtained outside the shores of Nigeria. Our body will support government where necessary and caution government where appropriate.
“Gone are the days when unionism was synonymous with the opposition. That was when the slogan of we being the leaders of tomorrow was invoked. Now we are the leaders of today and must be seen to be behaving like leaders and not rascals as Obasi is doing moving from one office to the other asking for alms.
“In the same vein we call on ASUU to, as a matter of urgency, return to the negotiating table with government to ensure that the strike is called off for our teeming students to return to their classes. Today all that is needed by all of us, ASUU inclusive, is a sacrifice to move Nigeria forward. No sector of the Nigerian economy is faring better and ASUU should not think otherwise. We appreciate the concern of ASUU for good education but they should also see the sincerity of the economy of the moment.
“In view of this, NANS gives ASUU one week to resume or face our enormous protest.