The House of Representatives has called on the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to order a partial reopening of schools to allow pupils sit the 2020 West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination.
The House called on Buhari to overrule the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, and allow pupils to sit the examination.
The House made the call at plenary on Tuesday following a unanimous adoption of a motion moved by Mr Nnolim Nnaji, with the Deputy Minority Leader, Toby Okechukwu; Chairman, House Committee on Basic Education and Services, Prof. Julius Ihonvbere; Awaji-Inombek Abiante, Usman Abdullahi, Abubakar Abdullahi and Bukola Oyewo, as co-sponsors.
The Committee on Basic Education and Services had on Friday faulted the decision of the Federal Government to suspend the plan to partially reopen schools for pupils in final classes to take external examinations.
The committee criticised the decision to disallow Nigerian pupils from sitting the WASSCE to be conducted by the West African Examination Council for the 2019/2020 academic session.
The House, while adopting the motion, “urge the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to reverse the decision of the Federal Ministry of Education withdrawing Nigeria from participating in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination and other similar examinations
The lawmakers also urge the minister to “immediately implement the health safety measures outlined by the Federal Executive Council for the conduct of examinations as well as provide soap, hand sanitizers and all other requirements stipulated by the NCDC.”
Similarly, a legal luminary and the founder of the Afe Babalola University, Chief Afe Babalola, said on Tuesday that the cancellation of the 2020 West African Senior School Certificate Examination by the Federal Government was capable of breeding frustration and promoting criminality among the 1.5 million pupils, who registered for it.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government has met with the West African Examination Council to resolve the controversy surrounding the stoppage of students from partaking in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination slated for August 4 to September 5 due to the COVID -19 pandemic.
Although the details of the meeting held in Abuja on Monday were still sketchy, The PUNCH learnt that a new date would be announced for another meeting, fuelling insinuations that it might have ended in a deadlock.
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Sonny Echono, spoke to our correspondent on the meeting between the National Parent-Teacher Association and the Federal Government.
, in a text message sent to our correspondent by 11.47pm on Monday, said, “We met today (Monday) with WAEC and new dates will be announced soon. A lot depend on me, you and fellow citizens taking responsibility to bring down the rate of spread and ensuring that our school teachers and students get what they need to open safely.”