In this interview, CBT operator ,Uche Newton spoke on the need to resolve the current issue on Biometrics and Browser failure.
My name is Uche Newton, CEO Blueocean Technologies. Our organization has been providing Test center services to JAMB since 2016.
Q. CBT center owners have been at loggerheads with JAMB. What is actually the current state of event?
A. We have not been at loggerhead, and we cannot be having issue with our partner. We are only demanding for a better business relationship between us, so as to have a hitch free movement.
Q. Can you expatiate on what you mean by better Business relationship?
A. we have been demanding for increase in the cost of rentals and services we provide. The amount we are getting from JAMB is no longer sustainable. The cost of running CBT centers has astronomically skyrocketed, due to high cost of essential commodities like diesel, computer parts and maintenance accessories. So we honestly ask for a little increment to enable us deliver excellent services to the nation and also pay our bills.
At the same time we are also demanding for a Memorandum of understanding that will in clear terms define our business relationship, rules and regulations, do’s and don’ts and policy directions. That is all we asking for.
Q. Have you made your plea known to JAMB, and what is the update ?
A. Yes. we have made our position known to JAMB on several fora and they have promised to look into our demands and come up with a position on it. You know, JAMB is governed by a Board, they are the one that will give us the necessary feedback . I am sure they are working on it seriously.
Q. Looking back at 2019 UTME examination, what will be your rating?
A. There were great improvement in the conduct of this year UTME exam. It was a success,, we are commending JAMB, for this noble task, and we don’t want them to relent, but they should rather improve on the standard.
Q. There were allegations of Biometrics and browsers failures in the 2019 UTME examinations, how true is this?
A. I disagree. It’s not true. You know the issue of biometric is a very complex one. Like for instance in some centers we noticed that during the registration, some candidate have light finger print and it took time for the scanner to capture them. Some had injuries on their fingers, some used coloring and all these made capturing difficult but eventually, when they are captured and they register, during the examination they may also face the same challenge getting verified into the examination hall.
Secondly, we have several cases of impersonation during the registration, and that will make it impossible for the actual candidate to gain entrance into the examination hall. Some persons do register for others by proxy and that will deny the candidate access into the hall. But jamb proffered a solution for such people who could not gain entrance into the exam hall due to biometric issues to write the examination at their Headquarters. So in actual sense, no one is actually denied access to writing the exams.
Q. What of the issue of browser failure?
A. Every center was advised to download an updated version of JAMB browser. Those that had issue with the browser may not have followed that instruction. There is no problem with the browser; the browser was used to conduct the exams across the federation successfully.
Q. What is your stand on Examination Malpractice?
A. We have zero tolerance for examination malpractice. We don’t support it, we don’t do it. We are advising other centers to maintain the integrity of the examination body and also conduct themselves with high sense of discipline.
Q. Is it true that examination malpractice cannot take place without the knowledge of the supervisor?
A. The supervisors are of high integrity and must have a reputable character before being appointed a supervisor. Such people are of Assistant directors’ cadre, Deputy Directors or a senior staff. They may not want to rubbish their integrity for pea nuts. Any supervisor that is privy to malpractice just want to play along to catch the culprit red handed, especially in some places that are volatile and security of life is not guaranteed at that time.
Q. Are you saying that you are not in support of the press conference by the CPAN president indicting jamb on biometric browser failure during the 2019 UTME examination?
A. I am not in support of the content of that press conference and CBT center owners have totally condemned it. If we have a contentious issue to resolve with JAMB, there are avenues to resolve them without resorting to telling lies and mud sliding. However, we exonerate and disassociate ourselves from that charade.
Q. How do the CBT center owners see Professor OLOYEDE? A. He is a very successful man who in a very short while has revolutionalised the electronic testing services and digital examination in Nigeria. He has brought in several innovations into the conduct of the UTME, and other psychometric examination. The CBT center owners support his cutting edge innovations and are glad to be a worthy and dependable partner to JAMB. The CBT center owners also use this medium to thank the Prof. in advance as we believe that he is already looking into our challenges and expedite actions on it.