A total of 321 blind candidates are taking part in the ongoing Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) nationwide.
The scheme is tagged ‘Equal Opportunity Group’, and is headed by a former Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), Professor Peter Okebukola.
It is an initiative of the JAMB Registrar, Professor Is’haq Oloyede, to give, as the name goes, equal opportunity to people with visual impairment to have access to university education.
According to JAMB’s Head of Information and Media, Dr Fabian Benjamin, 321 blind candidates are taking part in the examination, nationwide, in four centres: Abuja, Lagos, Kano and Enugu.
The examination took place in the four centres simultaneously on Friday May 19, and continues today.
Professor Okebukola was physically present to supervise the examination at the Lagos centre on Friday.
Transportation and hotel accommodation expenses of the blind candidates and their guides to and from the various centres were taken care of by JAMB, it was learnt.
The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board has denied rumour of deductions in candidates’ marks in the ongoing Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.
Head of JAMB Information and Media, Dr Fabian Benjamin, who refuted the reports in a statement in Abuja, advised the candidates to disregard the rumour.
He described the rumour as false, devilish and a ploy to cause disaffection among candidates who participated in the 2017 UTME.
The statement reads in part: “It is no longer news that all our centres have CCTV camera and we have watched all proceedings at the Computer Based Test (CBT) centres across the nation.
“Those involved in any infraction will be sanctioned in accordance with the provision of the Examination Malpractice Act.
“The board has not deducted any marks from any candidate and is not contemplating doing that as it is not a condition for sanction in any of the provisions of the law against malpractice.
“Again, we call on all candidates to be mindful of fraudulent characters who will send misleading information to create panic and take advantage of the situation to defraud them”.
Benjamin said that the examinations had so far been conducted for 1,698,835 candidates and that the remaining 19, 950 would sit for the examination on Saturday, May 20.
He said that the board would conclude the ongoing examination today and examination results were being released for candidates to check daily except Friday and Saturday.
Benjamin said that report that candidates could not check their results because they owed JAMB some money was also false.
He advised candidates not to pay any money to anybody as their results had already been sent to their mails and on the JAMB website: http://www.jamb.org.ng.
Benjamin advised candidates to log in to check the result with their registration number or with email address to print.
He urged candidates with any challenge to contact the board or check the organisation’s website for detailed information and numbers for inquiries.
Meanwhile, candidates, on Friday held a protest in Kaduna State over their inability to write the examination in various centers.
The candidates marched to the JAMB office in Kaduna and lamented the manner this year’s JAMB registration was being handled in the state.
The candidates also blocked JAMB’s office located along Tafawa Balewa Way as they also took their complaints to the head office.
Speaking to newsmen ,Paul Adoyi, a Jamb candidate said he came all the way from Benue State but disclosed he was disappointed in the manner jamb conducted this year exercise.
“I came all the way from Benue State since on friday last week with the intention to write my exams on saturday to my surprise till date am yet to write” he said.