The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has reacted to the sudden decision made by the federal government on the resumption of schools across the country, and its earlier announcement of dates for the commencement of the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
The Federal Government cancelled the West African Senior School Certificate Examinations which was scheduled to hold between August 4 and September 5, 2020.
Nigeria’s Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, disclosed this to State House Correspondents at the end of a meeting of the Federal Executive Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Meanwhile, the regional examination body has said that such decisions are within the rights of the governments of the five-member (West African) countries involved.
Report indicates that this examination was to take place within May/June 2020 but, due to the pandemic it had to be postponed.
The WAEC’s Head of Nigeria’s Office (HNO), Patrick Areghan, told Premium Times Newspaper Station, in an interview via voice call that the examination body was still reviewing the situation and that it would make its position known soon.
He said; “We cannot make any categorical statement for now. We are operating in five-member countries and we cooperate with the government. We recognise the fact that the government has the right and power to take positions, and we cannot confront the government. We work hand in hand with the government.”
He, however, pledged to update the public as soon as final decisions are taken.
The announcement made on Wednesday by the Minister of Education, Adamu, on the reversal of the government’s earlier position on schools’ resumption, was with the concern of safety being that the number of cases of coronavirus diseases in the country is still on the rise. He also said that children may not be able to observe the required protocols including social distancing, to keep themselves safe if allowed to return to schools.
Hence, the decision that no Nigerian school will participate in the WASSCE as opposed to the earlier announcement made by the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, during a media briefing on July 6 that the examination would take place between August 4 and September 5.
He said he would prefer that “Nigerian students lose an academic year than to expose them to dangers.”