By Temitope Ponle
Abuja – The House of Representatives has urged the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) to extend the use of compulsory National Identification Number (NIN) in the conduct of examinations till 2021.
This followed a motion moved by Rep. Zainab Gimba (APC-Borno) under Matters of Urgent Public Importance at plenary presided over by the Speaker of the House, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila on Wednesday.
The house said the extension would allow more time to better sensitise prospective candidates to the NIN.
JAMB, in October, said that the NIN would now be a prerequisite for all prospective admission seekers to register for the 2020 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).
The board added that the NIN, which is being issued by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), would help to curtail malpractices in UTME.
It also warned that only intending candidates who had the NIN will be registered, beginning with the 2020 examination.
Gimba, moving the motion, explained that the compulsory use of prospective candidates‘ data with NIMC database would facilitate the data capture of candidates for JAMB.
She said this would curb incidences of multiple registration and other forms of malpractices perpetrated in the UTME process.
The lawmaker, however, expressed concern that many prospective candidates from remote locations in the country might not be able to register for the UTME due to non-registration with NIMC.
She also expressed concern that the notice given by JAMB “is too sudden and not sufficient to allow all prospective UTME candidates to be captured by NIMC.
“Sometime this year, an official of the NIMC disclosed that less than 20 per cent of Nigerians are captured in NIMC’S database.
“Although there has been massive turnout of Nigerians to be captured by NIMC, most have been hindered by infrastructural challenges like poor internet network, power failure and sometimes inadequate manpower or equipment to attend to them.”
The house, however, urged NIMC to establish more registration centres to accommodate the growing number prospective candidates for the UTME.
Furthermore, the representatives directed the house committees on Tertiary Education and Services and National ldentity Management to Identify the challenges in capturing Nigerians.
“This is with a view to tackle (the challenges of capturing) them and increase funding (where) necessary,” the house observed.