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The Nigerian House of Representatives Committee on Basic Education and Services has pleaded to the Federal Government not to cancel the upcoming West African Senior School Certificate Examinations.
Prof. Julius Ihonvbere who is the chairman mail a statement which was titled: “WASSCE should not be canceled,” the lawmakers said that stakeholders and the general public were not notified before and that the “policy reversal is not good for the country and the WAEC candidate in specific, According to him he said that ” canceling the examination will create further difficulty to our education sector.”
According to the statement, it reads: “The House Committee on Basic Education and Services attained the announcement by the Honourable Minister of Education that Nigerian students would not be participating in the upcoming WASSCE examinations.
“He did not notify the country if this was in approval with other West African rulers or in meeting with the examination bodies, the state governments, and other stakeholders in the education sector.
“The Minister did not also instruct the general public if the ruling he made was the outcome of a meeting with all State Governments that are in charge of all but the Unity Secondary Schools that are owned by the Federal government.”
The Committee Chairman said the Hon. Minister of State, in his usually consultative and participatory strategy, had briefed the nation at the Coronavirus presidential Committee briefing, over the airwaves, and in an arrival before the House Committee on Basic Education where he assured Nigerians that all steps had or were being taken to ensure full compliance with all Coronavirus protocols.
“This sudden agreement setback is not good for our students and the country. It will create further confusion in the education sector, create disappointment, and suspicion among candidate parents, frustrate the students, which will lead them to the Repetition of class.
“The setback also shows that our policymakers may just be adopting a low approach to the need to confront the world coronavirus pandemic rather than taking protective measures and creative steps to manage and contain it.”
According to Ihonvbere, the House Committee disagrees with the Honourable Minister and understands that reconsideration is urgently needed to save Nigeria’s educational system and listed seven bottoms on which the decision should be invalidated and the examination successfully conducted.
He said: ” Nigeria is not the only country who is going to write the examination in the Amidst of Coronavirus pandemic.
“Nigeria should maintain that the examination be based exclusively on the already covered syllabus of schools;
“The Federal Ministry should not joke with its obligations but take immediate charge, provide action direction, engage the states and other stakeholders;
He further said ‘WAEC should prepare its invigilators and use all classrooms and event centers to conduct the examination and comply with the pandemic rule.
“The Ministry of Science and Technology, as well as the Ministries of Environment and Health, should immediately work out an agenda to sanitize all classrooms, provide necessary equipment like handwashing buckets with soap and water, and facemasks to all WAEC candidate,
“The plan of opening hostels for boarding to facilitate so-called amendment classes should be shut down immediately and the WAEC candidate should come from home, write the Examination and disperse immediately.”
The committee also said “ President Muhammad Buhari should direct all his Ministers to return to their working location (State) work with the Governors and make ensure the smooth, gentle implementation of the policy and conduct of the West Africa examination council.
“The House Committee thank the compunctions of the Honourable Minister of Education. Saying, We are parents just like him. No Nigerian parent would want to send back, even terminate the progress of their child.
The committee said “Let us collectively save and improve our educational system and build a future we can be all proud of.
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