Senate outlaws Post-UTME, validates results for 3 years

•Adopts 3% VAT to fund North-East Development Commission

THE Senate, on Thursday, put a stop to the conduct of Post Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) in the Universities by ratifying an amendment to the Act setting up the Jont Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB).

The JAMB amendment Act 2016, passed by the lawmakers, on Thursday, places the sole responsibility for conduct of admission, examinations into tertiary institutions on the examnation body.

Section 5(b) of the new bill places the sole responsibility of conducting admission examinations into tertiary institutions on the JAMB.

The bill provides that: “The matriculation examinations conducted by the Board shall be the sole examinations required for admission and entry into all universities, polytechnics (by whatever name called) and colleges of education (by whatever name called) to the exclusion of any institution or body.”

It also provides that the placement of suitably qualified candidates in tertiary institutions in accordance with existing vacancies, guidelines approved by authorities of such institutions and preferences expressed by candidates shall be the exclusive preserve of JAMB

The passage of the bill followed the adoption of the report of the Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFUND presented by to the lawmakers by the Committee Chairman, Senator Jibrin Barau.

The bill also provides that the collection and dissemination of information on all matters in relation to admissions into tertiary institutions and related matters are the duties of JAMB.

The newly-introduced Section 6 (1) I of the new bill guarantees the validity of any admission offered by JAMB for three years from the date of offer.

Section 6 (2) and Section 6(3) of the bill, which also supports the validity of admission for three years, also support the extension of admission validity period for three years.

Section 6(2) of the new bil states that: “A candidate meeting the requirement for admission and being duly qualified shall remain so qualified for the period prescribed in sub-section (1) of this section. A candidate awaiting admission shall be given preference in the succeeding year over fresh applicants who shall only become eligible when backlog has been cleared.”

Also, on Thursday, the Senate approved the establishment of the North-East Development Commission, while approving three per cent of the entire value added tax (VAT) of the federation to fund the agency.

The lawmakers took the decision, following the adoption of a report of the Senate ad-hoc committee on North-East Development Commission Bill.

The senate, had, on June 14, 2016 constituted the committee to resolve controversies over the funding and location of the proposed commission.

While senators from the zone openly disagreed on the location of the commission, there were disagreements on the amount to be recommended for funding.

The committee had earlier recommended 5 per cent of VAT to fund the commission but the senate eventually agreed to three percent.