ADDRESS BY THE CHAIRPERSON OF COUNCIL, DR. D. EVELYN S. KANDAKAI, AT THE OPENING OF THE INTERNATIONAL SUMMIT ON EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE HELD IN LAGOS, NIGERIA ON THURSDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2017.
Honourable Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu
Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Her Excellency, Mrs. Idiat Oluranti Adebule
The Keynote Speaker, Emeritus Professor P. A. I. Obanya
Vice Chairman of Council, Mr. Jonathan A. Mbaakaa
Registrar to Council, Dr. Iyi Uwadiae
Chief Government Nominees on Council/Other Members of Council
Heads of National Office
Heads of Examining Bodies
Heads of Tertiary Institutions
Principals of Secondary Schools
Representatives of the Mass Media
Ladies and Gentlemen
“It has been said that 95% of parents want their children in the first 5% of the class”.
It is my honour to welcome you to the International Summit on Examinations Malpractice being organised by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC).
I recently encountered someone who was doing a multiple choice question with one, two options or choices. I told her such items are poor. Why are they poor? This is so because multiple choices with one, two choices are not multiple firstly, but more importantly, they are what are described as a give-away. The answer to such a multiple choice question, is either A or B. This type of question is just like the True or False type questions, which one is left to guess correctly, at least 50% of time.
But questions that are fraudulent are a complete give away, benefitting only a select member of persons. Examination Malpractice represents one of the worst forms of corruption in the education sector. Two very important measurements concepts are seriously compromised.
- Validity – Whether the test measures what it is supposed to measure, OR
- Reliability – Whether the test results are consistent.
There is a debate about whether it is the school or the society that should lead the way in directing education. Since when it comes to examination malpractice, both the school and the society are suspects. WAEC, a bridge between the school and the society is today at this summit, championing or taking the lead in getting all of us as stakeholders out of the quagmire of examination malpractice.
The West African Examinations Council has deemed it necessary to organize this summit because examination malpractice has remained a major source of distraction for WAEC and other educational institutions in the Member Countries of the Council.
WAEC has continued to deploy all weapons in its arsenal and utilize every available opportunity to fight and discourage the die-hard perpetrators of examination malpractice. We have made frantic appeals to all stakeholders in the education sector to partner with us in the fight against this scourge that is endangering the quality of academic achievements and human capital development in our sub-region. The persistence of examination malpractice and its devastating effects on educational assessment and evaluation in the sub-region have worsened with the advent of the social media.
Some parents have continued to assist their children physically and financially to cheat in public examinations. Misguided candidates desperately seek for short cuts to examination success while their depraved adult collaborators carry out their nefarious activities for financial gains. School authorities and teachers have continued to create the conducive environment for this cankerworm to thrive.
Esteemed stakeholders in education, the consequences of examination malpractice on our national and sub-regional development are grave and frightening, as its multiplier effect on our national economies is overly destructive. It is an ill wind that blows nobody any good. For these reasons and many more, the West African Examinations Council has decided to intensify the fight against examination malpractice. Today, we seek to place the menace of examination malpractice on the agenda for international discourse. It is our expectation that this two-day summit will provide examining bodies and other educational institutions with the measures, strategies, ideas, methods, innovation and technologies that will usher the West African Sub-region into an era of fraud-free public examinations.
The presence of the learned Professor P. A. I. Obanya, Chairman Emeritus, WAEC as keynote speaker and other stalwarts of WAEC, academia, governments and school administrators, amongst us as presenters and speakers, plus our own contributions thereof, give us the hope, that a severe blow or knockout will be dealt to examination malpractice in our West African sub-region and lead to permanent eradication of this menace.
I therefore, urge you individually and collectively, to contribute to the prosecution of the war against this malaise. Posterity will judge us harshly if we continue to do otherwise. We must join hands together to kill examination malpractice before it kills education in our sub-region, as the death of education in any nation is the death of that nation.
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, I appreciate you all for honouring our invitation to the Summit.
I thank you most sincerely. May God bless you. “All thanks belong to God”.