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364 blind candidates to write 2023 UTME

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364 blind candidates to write 2023 UTME

A total of 364 blind candidates are to sit for the 2023 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) in 11 centres across the country.

The Chairman, JAMB Equal Opportunity Group (JEOG) Prof. Peter Okebukola, said this while providing the highlights of the 2023 examination on Thursday in Abuja.

Okebukola commended the JAMB Registrar, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, for the special arrangement for this category of Nigerians.

According to him, the goal of the Oloyede-led JAMB is to ensure that no Nigerian who is eligible, is prevented from taking the UTME regardless of disability.

He said that from 2017, JEOG had processed about 2,600 candidates for the UTME with over a third admitted to courses of their choice in higher education institutions in Nigeria, mainly universities.

He added that the initiative had been cited in the last four years in several countries, as a good model for Africa.

”The mode of examination administration is blended- use of Personal Computers (PCs) and use of the traditional Braille slate and stylus/typewriters in writing answers to questions that are read out by a subject expert.

”The blind candidates take the same test items as those who are not blind,” he said.
Okebukola who is also the Chairman, Governing Board of the National Open University of Nigeria NOUN revealed that JAMB had approved that from 2024, there would be a gradual migration to the full CBT mode customised for blind candidates.


He said that a pilot run was to be conducted later in the year to test this mode while also giving options to candidates who chose for fully Braille, fully CBT and full read-aloud modes.


“There are exciting times ahead for blind candidates and others with disabilities in realisation of the dream of Professor Is-had Oloyede for equal opportunity.
“So far, a good number of blind candidates processed through JEOG have secured admission to federal, state and private universities, polytechnics and colleges of education.


“In 2019, of the 390 candidates, a total of 175 (44.8 per cent) were given admission. This was unprecedented in the history of admission of such category of students into the Nigerian higher education system.
“In 2020, 89 of the 351 blind candidates (25 per cent) that sat for the UTME got admissions.


”In 2021, a total of 110 blind candidates were given admission, out of the 332 that sat for the UTME.


”This 33 per cent admission of blind candidates to higher education in an annual cohort is unprecedented in the African higher education system,” he said.


He added that in 2022, 139 candidates out of the 364 candidates that took the UTME (38 per cent) were admitted to the higher institution of their choice.


He said five of the blind candidates scored above 270 in the 2022 UTME, while 92 scored above 200.


”When compared proportionally with the non-blind candidates, the blind candidates are doing as well, if not better than the visually unimpaired candidates.


“The 2023 exercise is taking place in 11 centres nationwide. This is in the interest of bringing the venue of the examination closer to the candidates, especially with the security situation in the country.


“The centres are coordinated by seasoned academics and university administrators. The total number of candidates is 364,” he said.


Okebukola added that JEOG was already implementing a strategic plan of gradually increasing the ICT component of administration of the UTME to match improvement in ICT usage for the education of the blind in the tertiary institutions.


The examination, being conducted by the board for the visually impaired candidates would hold from April 27 to 29, under the supervision of the JAMB Equal Opportunity Group (JEOG).

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Education

Ramat Poly Students call on Zulum to bail them out of exploitation by lecturers in the consultancy service

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Ramat Poly Students call on Zulum to bail them out of exploitation by lecturers in the consultancy service

By: Bodunrin Kayode

The Students of the post graduate diploma class, Consultancy service, Ramat Polytechnic in maiduguri have called on Governor Babagana Zulum to wade into obvious exploitation being exhibited by some staff of that service against them.

They equally called on the Commissioner of Education, Engineer Lawan Wakilbe and the Rector of the polytechnic, Dr Bukar Abubakar to set up a committee of enquiry to investigate the case of extortion of money going on in the school of post graduate diploma, within the consultancy service of the institution.

One of the students of the post graduate diploma class, also a serving teacher in the state speaking on anonymity said that with the economic hardship been faced by Nigerians and citizens of Borno State, he was appalled that consultancy lecturers were exploiting students in such flagrant manner.

“Why would the lecturers of the consultancy unit request and demand students to pay the sum of Fifteen thousand naira for their Project Topics to be approved?” he asked.

He said it was disheartening and unfortunate for an institution like Ramat Polytechnic to allow such an ugly trend to be taking place in its premises.

He added that most of the students of the post graduate diploma class were State Government teachers and national youth service Corp (NYSC) members who had to struggle hard in order to squeeze and save money to pay registration fees and buy handouts to ensure they graduate with good grades.

The student regretted that he has never heard or seen a situation where he has to pay money to get approval for his Project Topic except in Ramat Polytechnic Maiduguri.

He then called on the attention of stake holders in the Borno education sector to intervene into the ugly trend as many students can not afford to pay the said amount being demanded and they also want the ugly trend to stop, before it drags the name of the institution into the mud.

When contacted to respond on the scandal, the Rector of the institution Dr Bukar Abubakar said he was very busy and was unable to respond to any form of interview as at the time of writing this report.

Ramat Poly Students call on Zulum to bail them out of exploitation by lecturers in the consultancy service

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UKAid depeens campaigns  against cybercrime, cultism across Nigeria•THRIVE ONLINE, CANCEL CULTS programmes transforming lives in Lagos, Edo,  Bayelsa

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UKAid depeens campaigns  against cybercrime, cultism across Nigeria
•THRIVE ONLINE, CANCEL CULTS programmes transforming lives in Lagos, Edo,  Bayelsa

By: Michael Mike

The THRIVE ONLINE campaign, a vital component of the broader BRIGHTER FUTURES programme supported by the UK government, continues its proactive efforts to combat cybercrime and cultism in Nigeria.

With a targeted focus on Lagos, Edo, and Bayelsa States, the campaign aims to safeguard individuals, families, and communities from the detrimental impacts of these societal scourges.

Ahmad Jumare, one of the Communications Managers of the Programme, underscored the grave threat posed by cybercrime in Nigeria. He emphasised the far-reaching consequences, including financial losses and compromised online safety for citizens.

Highlighting data from Kaspersky, a leading cybersecurity firm, Jumare reiterated Nigeria’s unfortunate distinction as the African country with the highest number of cyber threats over the past year.

In response, the THRIVE ONLINE campaign has ramped up its efforts to promote online safety and awareness.

Through its online platform thriveonlinenigeria.com, Facebook page, and monthly radio show on Eco FM, the campaign disseminates valuable information and best practices to mitigate cyber risks. Additionally, targeted interventions focus on mentoring young individuals at risk of involvement in cybercrime, redirecting their trajectories towards positive opportunities.

In the same vein, the CANCEL CULTS campaign addresses the pervasive issue of cultism and serious organised crime, particularly in Edo and Bayelsa States.

Utilising various platforms such as Facebook, radio talk shows, awareness events, and school engagements, the campaign delivers targeted messages aimed at preventing youth from succumbing to cult-related violence and criminal activities.

Mentorship programmes and sports initiatives play a pivotal role in sensitising vulnerable youths to the dangers of cultism while offering alternative pathways to personal and professional development. By collaborating with government agencies and civil society organisations, the CANCEL CULTS campaign strives to create an enabling environment where youths can thrive through legitimate means.

Both campaigns are integral parts of the overarching BRIGHTER FUTURES programme, which has already made significant strides in transforming the lives of vulnerable youths across various communities. By providing skills acquisition programs, community-based initiatives, and mentorship opportunities, the programme empowers individuals to build sustainable livelihoods while addressing past trauma and enhancing self-worth.

Philip Slaboh, Bayelsa state coordinator for the program, commended the positive impact of the Bright Futures Project, noting tangible changes in the behavior and outlook of youths involved in drugs and cultism. He underlined the importance of intervention programs in steering young people towards constructive pathways and away from the perils of criminality.
Similarly, Williams Ehisogie, head of Edo State Security Network (ESSN) in Idogbo secretariat, Ikpoba- Okha LGA, shared, “The Brighter Futures project introduced valuable skills, such as interacting with organizations mandated for crime prevention. For instance, when we rescued a human trafficking victim in Ikpoba-Okha LGA, I contacted the project team, who connected me with NAPTIP for prosecution—a testament to the effectiveness of collaboration.”

Meanwhile, Mrs Blessing Abiri, Lagos state coordinator for the programme, stressed: “Success in preventing serious and organized crime hinges on building resilience and strategically mapping goals to experience transformative life changes. The Brighter Futures interventions have opened beneficiaries up to the impact of a growth mindset and self-confidence to thrive in their communities without fear, empowering them with renewed hope for a bright future.”

The THRIVE ONLINE and CANCEL CULTS campaigns represent proactive measures aimed at safeguarding Nigerian communities and fostering a brighter future for all citizens.

UKAid depeens campaigns  against cybercrime, cultism across Nigeria
•THRIVE ONLINE, CANCEL CULTS programmes transforming lives in Lagos, Edo,  Bayelsa

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Mathematics Key to Country’s Development and Growth-NTIC School Clinches 100 Medals at National Mathematics Competition

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Mathematics Key to Country’s Development and Growth-NTIC School Clinches 100 Medals at National Mathematics Competition

By: Michael Mike

The Managing Director of Nigerian Tulip International Colleges (NTIC), Mr. Feyzullah Bilgin has urged Nigerians to take the study of mathematics very serious as it could be the key to unearthing in the Nigeria entrance into deserving development and growth.

Bilgin, made the call in a statement issued on Thursday during which he announced that students of the Nigerian Tulip International Colleges (NTIC) have won over 100 medals in the 1st round of the National Mathematical Centre (NMC) competitions.

He noted that mathematics is not as difficult as many students believe, insisting that all it requires to be atop the subjects is interest and good teacher.

On the National Mathematical Centre (NMC) competitions, he said it is mandated to identify and encourage young talents, stimulate enthusiasm among young Nigerian students and attract distinguished mathematical scientists, from all over the country.

He noted that it is also aimed at enabling it tackle national set goals in the development of mathematical sciences and represent Nigeria in the various most prestigious international olympiads.

He said: “We are pleased to announce to you our outstanding achievements from the 2023/2024 1st round of National Mathematical and Sciences Olympiad Competitions according to the results released by N.M.C. Abuja.”

He listed some of the outstanding achievements of the NTIC to include students of the school winning 27 gold, 38 silver and 35 bronze medals in various subjects including math, the science subjects and informatics Olympiads.

He said: “Our schools also achieved a record-breaking number of 293 students that qualified for the second round of the competitions.

“In the whole of Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Yobe States, our schools clinched the best in Mathematics Olympiad.

“In the whole of F.C.T. Abuja, our schools are the best in biology, chemistry, junior mathematics, and physics Olympiads.

“In the F.C.T, our students clinched the top 3 in biology Olympiad; 9 of our students emerged in the top 10 in junior math; 6 of our students emerged in the top 10 and half of the students that qualified for the second round are our students in senior math. It would also interest you to know that one of our J.S.S. 1 students surpassed several J.S.S. 2 and 3 students to clinch 3rd position in the state.

“In the same Abuja, one of our students: Chiemela Ahachi clinched the best positions in both physics and chemistry Olympiads.

“In the whole of Kano State, our schools are the best in junior informatics, junior math, senior informatics, and senior Math.

“In the whole of Kano State, our students clinched top 5 in junior informatics Olympiad; top 10 and 89% of 2nd round qualifiers in junior mathematics Olympiad; top 5 and 89% of 2nd round qualifiers in senior informatics Olympiad; and 8 of our students emerged in the top 10 and 82% of 2nd round qualifiers in senior math Olympiads,” he said.

The director also said in the whole of Lagos State, our school is the best in junior and senior mathematics, which are clinched by two blood brothers.
In the whole of Lagos State, our students occupied the top 6 in senior math Olympiads.

“In the whole of Kaduna State, our schools are the best in junior informatics, chemistry, and physics Olympiads.

“In the whole of Kaduna State, our students occupied the top 9 in junior informatics, and came top 3 in physics.

“In the whole of Yobe State, there are no rival schools as our schools occupied every available position in all the subject categories.”

Mathematics Key to Country’s Development and Growth-NTIC School Clinches 100 Medals at National Mathematics Competition

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