On Tuesday, the House of Representatives urged President Muhammadu Buhari to direct the ministry of Education to allow students to participate in the 2020 West Africa Examination Council (WAEC).
Specifically, the lower legislative chamber urged the government to reverse its decision; pulling Nigeria out of the WAEC Examination scheduled between the 3rd of August to 5th of September, 2020.
The resolution followed a motion of urgent public importance moved by Nnoli Nnaji. The lawmaker in his motion asked the government to use the same strategy for re-opening of markets and religious centres for students to write their examinations.
Further, he stated that the government should embark on testing of students; two weeks before the WAEC examination and ensure provisions of hand-washing facilities in schools.
Nnaji explained that the Minister of State (Education), Emeka Nwajubia announced on the 6th of July that Nigeria will participate in the 2020 Senior Secondary School Examination (SSCE).
He, however, noted that the decision was countered by another announcement by the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu; that Federal government-owned schools will not participate in the annual examination.
Nnaji described the two announcements as confusing, adding that non-participation will have a negative impact on the students.
He said that WAEC picked a new examination date scheduled for August 3 to September 5, 2020; after consultation with health experts and the 5 governments in the Council.
“The choice of the date was not arbitrary, rather; WAEC consulted extensively with the government of all five countries that make up the council.
“I am worried by these contradictory pronouncements by the two ministers within a short period of time. Worried that Nigeria’s non-participation in the annual exam portends psychological, social-economic, and health of the students, and already overburdened parents and guardians.
“The decision will be devastating on our education system and Nigeria’s economy at large. It will also frustrate students.
“By taking precautionary measures, the federal government reopened the market, airports, inter-state travel, and religious centres. The government should apply the same measures.”
The motion was adopted without any debate by the members of the House and directed the house committees on basic Education and health services, legislative compliances to ensure compliance.