JAMB Suspends Ejikeme Joy Mmesoma for Three Years over Alleged UTME Result Forgery

JAMB Suspends Ejikeme Joy Mmesoma for Three Years over Alleged UTME Result Forgery

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Nigeria’s paramount body overseeing admissions into tertiary institutions, recently proclaimed the suspension of a candidate, Ejikeme Joy Mmesoma, from participating in its Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) for three years due to allegations of falsifying her 2023 result. This bold move by JAMB has spurred a wave of responses from various factions, provoking a critical analysis of the scenario and the integrity of JAMB’s testing process.

JAMB expressed its stance categorically, asserting that the UTME result being brandished by Miss Ejikeme was fraudulent. As an important note, JAMB highlighted that it had ceased issuing Notifications of Result slips following the 2021 UTME. The rationale for this decision was to combat the disturbing trend of candidates falsifying these documents.

Ejikeme’s suspension has not come without its set of controversies and allegations. Romanus Ejikeme, the father of the accused, has voiced strong opposition to JAMB’s decision, suggesting a conspiracy to rob his daughter of her hard-earned academic achievements. His cries of foul play are being echoed by civil rights advocacy groups, such as the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), which has openly criticized JAMB’s handling of the situation and demanded a comprehensive investigation.

The press release by JAMB, led by its Head of Public Affairs and Protocol, Fabian Benjamin, seeks to put to rest any doubts about the integrity of its systems. In a determined tone, the statement reasserted that “the Board’s system was neither tampered with nor compromised, as the candidate simply falsified a copy of a result slip of a candidate named ‘Asimiyu Mariam Omobolanle’, who sat the UTME in 2021 and scored 138.”

JAMB is emphatic about its assertion, stating that the accused, in her defense, unintentionally revealed the legitimate owner of the result in question. The Board encourages the general public to verify their suspicions by scanning the QR code on the result slip to ascertain the genuine owner of the result. It also emphasized that since 2022, it has been issuing actual UTME result slips, complete with photographs of candidates, to combat the trend of falsification.

It’s intriguing to note that Miss Ejikeme is the only candidate from the 2023 UTME batch who parades the outdated ‘Notification of Result’, which has raised more questions about her claims. Despite the brouhaha surrounding the case, JAMB remains steadfast, reminding Nigerians of previous instances where false claims were made against the Board, only for the accusers to apologize later.

The situation with Ejikeme has escalated to the point where relevant security agencies have been involved to perform a thorough investigation. JAMB has even extended an invitation for a public session, involving security agencies, the candidate, her guardians, and her legal team, to delve deeper into the matter.

In the meantime, however, JAMB has taken the decisive step of withdrawing Ejikeme’s 2023 UTME result and banning her from taking the Board’s examination for the next three years. This suspension is based on the severity of the alleged infraction, underlining the seriousness of JAMB’s stance on academic integrity.

JAMB has even gone so far as to question Ejikeme’s role in the supposed forgery, suggesting that she was being coached by others based on her demeanor in a video she posted defending her claims. It has also hinted that the fraudulent result might have originated from ‘the street’, indicating a possible racket involved in such malpractices.

In response to these allegations, Governor Chukwuma Soludo of Anambra State has established an inquiry committee to investigate the matter, a move appreciated by JAMB, which expressed interest in participating in the process.

On the other hand, Romanus Ejikeme continues to vehemently oppose JAMB’s claims, noting his daughter’s consistent academic excellence throughout her school career. He firmly believes in Mmesoma’s innocence and alleges an ulterior motive behind the suspension: a conspiracy to transfer a scholarship to someone else.

As this contentious matter unfolds, the integrity of JAMB and the reliability of its examination system will undoubtedly continue to come under scrutiny. It will be interesting to observe how the story develops and how the results of the impending investigations will influence the landscape of tertiary admissions in Nigeria.

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