Registrar condemns toll -gate classes for misleading candidates!
By Christopher Ambe
A strong warning by the Cameroon GCE Board before the start of the 2014 GCE against exam malpractices has paid off as the exams ,which started smoothly last May have just ended hitch-free. The GCE Board had put in place a network to root out any form of malpractices and get perpetrators prosecuted.
|Sir Ekema Monono|
Sir Humphrey Ekema Monono, Registrar of the Cameroon GCE Board told The Recorder on June 12 in Buea that, the exams started well and ended well. “2014 has come to an end in the manner we started it. It was a serene 2014,”he stated.
A total of 164,789 testees sat for all the exams the GCE board ran, which included GCE General and GCE Technical in both the ordinary and advanced levels. This gives an absolute difference of 9,876 this year compared to the number of candidates in 2013 and a percentage increase of 6.9,
Against a background of alleged exam leakage and banking on the findings of police investigations, the Registrar confidently dismissed claims that certain GCE question papers leaked. He added that he had ordered Police in Buea to interrogate some examiners of a subject, whose questions were purportedly leaked. “When you have some noise about the integrity of the exams, you have to make sure that decorum is restored and that all of us have the same information. That is why some examiners on Commerce were interrogated”, he told The Recorder. “ People suspected that some questions of Commerce had leaked but we have verified using all the means at our disposal to know that nothing of that nature happened, and that exam was conducted as it had to be conducted .I don’t think the teachers have a problem. Any time you go to the police does not mean that you are a criminal”
However, Sir Ekema Monono condemned the phenomenon of toll-gate classes during the examination period. “This is a cankerworm that is eating deep into our examination system,” he remarked.
He narrated how some schools-without boarding houses, brought back their Forms Five and Upper Six students to start teaching them every night. “It is unfortunate that some candidates have missed their exams because they overslept-they were taught till about 5 or 6:00 A M and they had little or no time to actually have a good day’s rest; they missed the exams. “Others have come to the examination room very disappointed, unable to continue writing because all what they have been lectured over night has nothing to do with the question paper in front of them. This is the wrong time to teach and I think it is the wrong kind of psychological preparedness we are giving our children.
The Registrar urged that toll-gate classes should be condemned totally warning that henceforth schools caught in such malpractice “will have to be suspended as centres of examinations. “If caught, they will lose their status as accommodation and or registration centres because they mislead our candidates. Not only that, they give room for every other person to suspect that they are cheating or that they have access to the questions”, he said.
The Registrar even cited a certain college in Muea. Hear him “They registered students both internally and externally and when they started organizing this toll-gate(mid-night classes),those who were registered externally wanted to attend the classes but they were sent away. What do you think those candidates have behind their minds? That something is happening. They even went as far as informing us that their principal has moved office; that he is now officiating from his house where all the GCE questions are found. “I don’t think the GCE Board operates with individuals and the security measures we have in place are such that if any of that kind of thing happens, we must know”
The Registrar continued, “Imagine our questions in Muyuka CBA where I had to order the destruction of a save, because the superintendent has misplaced his own key.In front of the forces of law and Order, the destruction was done serenely and we discovered that our questions were highly secured. “So, this is the kind of information that goes about and that makes for the health of the examination. People trying to teach, I don’t know what they teach at that time. They put the candidate’s off-balance. We should condemn this kind of practice; let the candidates be allowed to write like others
In yet another twist, Sir Ekema Mono talked of another practice. “The Purchase of examination question is another practice that came from Ekombe.I bet you I went up and bought the questions, hand written. “Imagine somebody who is selling a question on religion that cannot spell St.Luke.So what kind of GCE question is that?
The exam official faulted parents who encourage their children to buy so-called questions and attend toll-gate classes, stressing that such parents are also not doing their children justice. “They should use this money to buy the candidates the books they need, than buying so-called GCE leaked questions and paying for toll-gate classes”
As the marking of the GCE will soon commerce, the Registrar said the publication of results would be as scheduled. “If our machines don’t break down, we are ready to do even better...”