WAEC withholds Niger results over N694m debt

By Ummi Ismaeel,

Minna

The fate of over 49, 000 candidates who sat for the last exams conducted by the West African Examination Council (WAEC) in Niger State is uncertain.

  They may not be able to access their results for admission into tertiary institutions of their choice except the state government pays the N694 million debt to the examination body.

  The immediate past administration paid WAEC and NECO fees for all eligible candidates, including non-indigenes writing both examinations, but the current administration reviewed the incentives by not only paying for only WAEC but for certain categories of students.

  It would also be recalled that the present administration in the state made non-indigenes students to pay almost twice what indigenes in tertiary schools pay across all courses.

The recent logjam that is giving parents sleepless nights is that the Governor Abubarkar Sani Bello administration had agreed to pay for only 36, 397 who passed the mock exams conducted by the state Ministry of Education out of the 48, 715 candidates that sat for the exams.

  Investigations revealed that due to the inability to pay for the 36, 397 as promised, about 12, 000 other candidates whose participation in the WAEC examination was sponsored by their parents /guardians are now caught in the web of the state government’s indebtedness to WAEC.

  To recover their N694 million, WAEC is now withholding results of both state government sponsored and that of every other student who sat for the exams in Niger State thereby frustrating their chances of getting admission into any tertiary institution of their choice.

   Some of the parents, who spoke to our correspondent, lamented the frustrations they and their wards had been subjected in getting admitted into tertiary institutions due to the failure of the state government to off-set the, N694 million debt.

  One of the parents, Mrs. Helen Hassan, lamented that “After struggling to raise money to pay for our children, WAEC refused to release the results. We are hearing that it is because the state government refused to pay N694 million debts to WAEC.

 “As a parent, many of us had to sell our personal belongings just to raise money and pay for WAEC and NECO of our children because the state government refused to pay for them. We are now suffering the consequences of the state government’s inability to pay the outstanding debt because WAEC has refused to release the results. This government is not being fair to us”.

  Meanwhile, Niger State Commissioner for Education, Hajiya Fatima Madugu, confirmed that the state government WAs owing WAEC N694 million.

  She however added that some money would be advanced to WAEC soon to ensure the immediate release of the results.

Madugu also told our correspondent that there was an understanding between WAEC and the state government for a N30 million monthly installments and promised that the money would be released.

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