The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has revealed that the decision to reduce the cut-off marks for admission into tertiary institutions was done by stakeholders in the education sector.
The examination body had been criticised for the new cut of mark it released for the 2017/2018 academic session but it revealed that this was done to make the process more flexible.
Vanguard reports that Prof. Ishaq Oloyede who is the registrar of JAMB allayed the fears of Nigerians insinuating that it was a testament to the failure in the sector. He said the board recommendation was to only provide the institutions with a benchmark and that universities could raise their cut off marks above 120 but not more than 180.
He said: “With this decision, universities are not to go below the minimum 120 cut-off points adopted by the meeting for admissions. “What JAMB did was a recommendation, we only determined the minimum, whatever the various institutions determine as their admission cut-off mark is their decisions.
The Senate and academic boards of universities should be allowed to determine their cut-off marks.” Chief Afe Babalola in his reaction rejected the new cut-off mark noting that he enjoyed good and quality education and therefore expressed worry over the new direction education was taking in the country.
He said: “On June 3, last year, a day after the Federal Government announced the scrapping of the Post-UTME as part of the qualifying procedure for admission into Nigerian universities, I cautioned in a write-up that was published in many Nigerian newspapers that that singular step was nothing but a calamitous mistake.
“Good enough, the Federal Government, last week, rescinded that position in favour of the Senate of individual universities exercising its statutory powers of determining who qualifies to be admitted into its university.
“The euphoria that greeted the reinstatement of the Post-UTME by protagonists of quality education was still very thick in the air before the air was fouled again yesterday (Tuesday), when JAMB announced the reduction of cut off marks for students angling for admission into Nigerian universities.
“As a stakeholder in the education sector, I enjoyed good and quality primary school education when the pass mark was a minimum of 50 per cent. I am, therefore, worried and curious that this far-reaching decision could be taken without due consideration for its implication on the quality of education on offer in Nigerian tertiary institutions.
“My position is that there is an urgent need for education summit to be attended by regulators and operators as well as well-meaning stakeholders in education to diffuse this thick ice of confusion that has engulfed our education landscape.”
while also lifting the ban for post UTME examination.
These decisions were taken at the 2017 Combined Policy Meetings on Admissions into Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria which ended on Tuesday, August 22.
Minimum cut-off marks for tertiary institutions are:
– Universities were pegged at 120
– Polytechnics and colleges of education were pegged at 100
– Innovative enterprising institutes was pegged at 110