The National Examination Council (NECO) says it has been able to stem the crisis in the council due to inadequacies in the working conditions and internal misgivings resulting to some staff dismissal.

The Registrar of NECO, Prof. Ibrahim Wushishi said this during an interaction with newsmen on his achievements to mark one-year in office on July 26 in Minna.

Wushishi said that he took over when the council was in crisis and was able to resolve a lot of issues through the instrument of the board.

” For one year, it was full of activities as I took over at the time the crisis in the council was subsiding.

” NECO is an institution established with rules, regulations and public service regulations to guide every activities of the council.

” In working with the framework of the document for us to guide the operations of the council, we will have no problems,” he said.

The registrar identified posting of staff for assignment as one of the most challenging task in the council.

He, therefore, said that the council had worked on a software to accommodate members of staff on routine posting of assignment so as to eliminate rancor among staff.

” I met issue that has to do with staff welfare due to the enormous tasks of staff and the council is aware of this, I minuted on the document with regards to this to the board and the board is working on it.

“We also instituted a life insurance policy for staff due to the crisis involved in the job as staff may be affected by accident when carrying out their official assignment and some die in the process,” he said.

Speaking on the 25 per cent deduction from the Treasury Single Account (TSA) of NECO by the Federal Government, the registrar said this had adverse effects on the financial strength of the council.

He added that due to the dwindling revenue of the council, there was need to stop the deductions so that the council could attend to issues pertaining to the conduct of examinations.

” In 2019, NECO remitted N1.5millon and there was suggestion on the need to reduce the 25per cent deduction.

” After the SSCE, we had issues as we could not pay contractors, supervisors and because of this we could not release the results.

” We needed about N7 million to release our results. The Ministry of Finance said they can only give us 50 per cent of the money as intervention and so we were able to pay examiners and thereafter released the results.

” And since that time, we had continued to pursue the removal of the 25 per cent from source,” he added.

On provision of basic amenities, Wushishi said that the council lacked the basic amenities to operate and had so far embarked on the construction of toilet, ICT facilities and as well purchased own server for e- library in the council.

He also said that the council purchased 209 pieces of tyres for logistics for the conduct of its examinations, 45 computers, 45 printers, 45 photocopiers and 45 generators for its zonal offices.

He further said that some photocopiers were also purchased for its offices outside the country adding that the council had also made provision in building four state offices who were on rent.

On debt owed the council, he said the council had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) to draw the money from the coffers of states government account owing NECO fees.

” States are owing a lot to the tune of over N2 million. Since 2012 till date, we are making efforts and some states are responding. We have written the OAGF to sign an MoU so that states owing can be deducted from source.

” We are being tactical about it as we also sensitised state governments on the need to keep this place afloat by payment of their fees,” he said.

Also, speaking on security of the examination, he said that security was everybody’s business adding that procedures were put in place to ensure the safety of its examinations.

” We have deployed security measures across the states, we are also not lacking in the area of the security of our question papers and we are instituted a strategy to ensure our environment is secured .

Wushishi, however, said that the council had witnessed reduction in examination malpractices saying that in 2020, it made over 30,000 cases of examination malpractices and about 20,000 in 2021, believing the 2022 examinations would reduce to the barest minimum.

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