Kwara State Government on Friday told school authorities and parents it would not tolerate examination malpractices under any guise, warning that anyone caught in the crime would be punished.
The government instead urged school authorities and parents to encourage students to prepare very well for the upcoming examinations rather than look forward to a system that aids and abets cheating.
“As we all know, the examinations will start on the 17th of August, 2020. You should all go back home and relay this warning to all your invigilators,” the state Commissioner for Education and Human Capital Development Hajia Fatimah Ahmed said at a meeting of the All Nigeria Confederation of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPSS), proprietors of private schools and the leadership of the Nigeria Union of Teachers in Ilorin.
“Secret invigilators and intelligent officers will be everywhere to ensure compliance. Not only that, but anti-Corruption agencies would also be moving around without notice. Anybody caught aiding and abetting examination malpractice or involved in any form of sharp practices will be punished according to the law of the land.”
The warning came as schools prepare for senior and junior school certificate examinations that begin later this month.
Ahmed reminded the principals and parents that the AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has had to pay N30.5m penalties imposed on the state following WAEC’s blacklist of 165 Kwara schools over rampant examination malpractices in 2019.
The commissioner said the new administration would not condone such behaviour under its watch.
The break occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic will not be an excuse to allow students to cheat during the forthcoming examinations, she added.
“I know you are respected and responsible gentlemen and women who will not be ready to ruin your career for any amount. I, therefore, plead with you all to protect your names and the future of our children,” Ahmed said.
The commissioner said the administration is investing so much in education infrastructure and prompt payment of wages amid dwindling resources.
She also announced that Junior Secondary School class three students would resume classes on Monday ahead of their own examination in September.
She called for respect for all safety protocols to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
For his part, the state President of ANCOPSS, Toyin Abdullahi, said the body would not be a party to examination malpractices and directed its members not to stay in their respective schools during the examinations.
“On no account should any principal stay in their schools during examinations. There will be no hidden places for principals aiding and abetting examination malpractices,” Abdullahi said.
Dr Adetunji AbdulRahman, President of the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools, said the incident of examination malpractices that occurred last year was “embarrassing”.
“We have told our people that we must nip the ugly incidents in the bud. It will never repeat itself. We have organised ourselves into task force and engaged security agencies to also assist us,” AbdulRahman said.