Jamb registrar calls for national debate on cut off marks

Temitope Mustapha, Abuja

Jamb boss, Professor Ishaq Oloyede

Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, Professor Ishaq Oloyede has called for a national debate on the propriety of cut off marks into tertiary institutions in Nigeria.

The Registrar also called on stakeholders to have a rethink on allowing institutions determine their cut off marks and categories of candidates they would be offering admission based on their capacities.

Oloyede argues that the uniformity of cut off marks doesn’t make sense when colleges and polytechnics admit for NCE and diplomas, while universities admit for degrees and yet students are subjected to the same cut off marks.

“Starving these tiers of institutions from admitting  candidates who if not engaged, may likely become easy prey to social vices.”

Oloyede expressed another concern.

“The rich have multiple opportunities which include going abroad for studies while the poor only have the opportunity of struggling for the scarce spaces here.”

He said children who are priviledged write JAMB and if they do not get the required cut-off marks,  they are taken out of the country for studies abroad.

“They come back and they are integrated while the poor can’t afford it and are forever denied the opportunity of education.” In his words, “let institutions admit what they want according to their needs.

This mean that if a University wants 250 as minimum cut off marks, why not? And if another wants less, so be it. If a polytechnic like Yaba wants 250, let them admit and if Gboko polytechnic in Benue State wants less than 200, let them admit.

Institutions should be known for their individual quality and not collective standard,” the Registrar added.

According to the Jamb boss, this will foster positive competition for the overall good of all tertiary institutions in Nigeria.


He added that the management of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board had resolved to ensure that the change agenda of Mr President, concerning education, was actualized in no distant time.

This, he said, would be made possible through reforms currently going on in the Board.

Oloyede maintained that the Board would continue to make reforms to protect the interest of every Nigerian child irrespective of whether they were poor, rural settlers and so on.

He has expressed concerns over elitist policies saying that ” the Board had cancelled the use of scratch cards which were hitherto sold only by banks in the cities to pin vending which can be obtained by candidates anywhere using their phones, Web payment,  online quick teller; ATM payment,  quick teller mobile application and Bank branch (cash cards) etc. This is to make the services easily accessible, discourage fraudulent acts associated with the cards system and to conform with global best practice.”

The Registrar also disclosed that the Board has critically looked at the process of regularizing candidates and found a lot of lapses.

“In  its efforts to discourage this abuse and perhaps stop it permanently, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), has designed a template to be completed on-line by candidates and endorsed by the Vice-Chancellors, Rectors, Provosts or Registrars of the candidates institutions, and will then be submitted  to the Board’s Offices, nearer to the institution, for the Registrar’s approval subject to available evidence.”

The Registrar may deny approval if sufficient and convincing reasons are not given.

” The public is to note that all admissions are done by the academic board of tertiary institutions and submitted to the Board, who ensures that the admissions meet set requirements by proprietors of these institutions and government criteria.  As such, there is no basis for regularization.

The Board only designed this process to clear any backlog as it doesn’t intend to continue with the regularization exercise again,” Oloyede said.