Friday Olokor and Folashade Adebayo
The Federal Government has directed the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board to consult with the relevant stakeholders so as to come up with new and separate cut-off marks for admission into universities, polytechnics and colleges of education from next year.
A statement issued on Monday by the Deputy Director (Press and Public Relations), in the Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, said the Minister of State for Education, Prof. Anthony Anwukah, gave the directive after a one-day meeting with chief executive officers in the ministry.
According to him, it is wrong to subject candidates seeking admission to different higher institutions to the same cut-off marks when the duration and contents of their courses are different.
The minister also approved the decision by JAMB to reduce its cut-off marks for admission into tertiary institutions.
Anwukah maintained that the current policy of adopting 180 as the uniform cut-off point for admission lacked fairness, equity and logic.
Goong said, “The minister is in full support of the decision of the board to introduce discriminatory cut-off marks for admissions into the institutions.”
Anwukah also directed JAMB to publish, in full, the list of unutilised admission slots into all universities, polytechnics and colleges of education on a course-by-course basis at the end of the first leg of the admission process to enable students and parents to take full advantage of existing admission vacancies in institutions where such exist.
The minister said this would prevent a situation where some institutions had more than the number of students they needed, while others could hardly fill their quotas.
At the meeting, JAMB Registrar/Chief Executive, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, told the minister that the belief that the carrying capacity of Nigerian universities was far below the number of candidates that qualified for admission was wrong.
According to him, only those with 180 cut-off mark can be considered for admission, adding that out of those who met the criterion, a significant number might not have the five credits required.