As registration for 2017 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination closes on Friday, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has said that an unprecedented number of 1.7m candidates registered for the examination.
About 1.2million candidates registered for the UTME in 2015 and 2016 respectively. With a cost of N5,000 per registration form (excluding an additional N500 for the reading text), our correspondent learnt that the board raked in N8.5bn from the sale of forms.
The Head of Information, JAMB, Mr. Fabian Benjamin, who said that the number of registered candidates have “never been recorded in the history of the board’’, however, noted that JAMB had put in place adequate facilities to accommodate the upsurge in the number of candidates.
Benjamin, who spoke in a telephone interview with our correspondent on Thursday, noted that the board would conduct the 2017 UTME on April 13.
He said, “In 2016, about 1.2million candidates wrote the examination. It was the same in 2015 and that was why we projected for 1.5milion candidates this year. This year, registration period was reduced from six months to one month. But, despite the short registration period and capturing of 10 fingers, we have recorded 1.7million candidates. This shows the effectiveness of our processes. It also shows that whenever you have a setback you should not step back.
“We have put everything in place to ensure the success of the examination. We have the capacity to accommodate 1.7million candidates. In 2016, we used 510 computer-based centres, including six foreign centres for 1.2million candidates. This year, we are making use of 633 centres. There is an increase of more than 100 centres to take care of the additional candidates.’’
Benjamin also noted that less than 10 per cent of registered candidates sat for the mock examination which held on Saturday. He added that the results had been released to the candidates.
“The mock examination came out as our best conducted examination. We wish it was the main examination. We could have held it the first time but we wanted the best that we could be proud of. The number of candidates who sat for the mock examination could have been higher but we had to shut the portal,’’ he said.