Registration is ongoing for private candidates wishing to complete their ‘O’ level subjects, to write a new diet of the Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) in January.
The Head of Nigerian National Office (HNO), West African Examinations Council (WAEC), Mr. Olu Adenipekun, said yesterday at a news briefing at the council’s testing and training centre in Ogba, Lagos that with the January/February diet, WAEC would conduct three examinations yearly.
The other two are the May/June WASSCE for school candidates and November/December WASSCE for private candidates.
Adenipekun, however, said only 19 subjects would be examined in the new diet, adding that centres would be located in urban areas in the Federal Capital Territory and other states, except Borno, until the examination gained popularity.
The approved subjects are: Commerce, Financial Accounting, Christian Religious Studies, Economics, Geography, Government, Islamic Studies, Literature in English, English language, Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba, Further Mathematics, General Mathematics, Agricultural Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Civic Education.
The HNO said registration for the new diet opened in October and would close on December 29.
Explaining the reason for introducing the new diet, Adenipekun said it was in response to the agitations of private candidates for more opportunities to retake the examination within a shorter period.
He said: “The conduct of an additional diet of the WASSCE for private candidates became necessary because WASSCE for school candidates is written first every year and the results are released before the conduct of the WASSCE for private candidates. Therefore, school candidates who wish to retake the examination usually have the opportunity of doing so with the private candidates’ examination.
“But with growing concern among stakeholders over what they perceive as discrimination or denial of equal opportunity against private candidates, there has been a deluge of agitation, criticism and appeal across West Africa for the council to find a way of reducing the agony of long waiting experienced by the private candidates who desire another shot at WASSCE.
“This situation is often cited as being responsible for the level of desperation oftentimes displayed by the perpetrators of examination malpractice at the private candidates’ examination centres. The council has also observed with chagrin the penchant by external candidates to register for the WASSCE for school candidates, which has led to an astronomical increase in malpractice during the examination.
“Council, which is the Governing Board of WAEC, after thorough deliberations on the issue, approved that National Offices should begin the conduct of one additional diet every year for private candidates.
“I am delighted to inform you that preparations for the conduct of WASSCE for private candidates in 2018, first series, are in full gear. All hands are on deck to ensure that a remarkable success is recorded during the conduct of the examination.”
Adenipekun said the new diet is being conducted only by Nigeria.