The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has introduced new security measures to prevent the leakage of examination questions in all of its examinations.
“We cannot divulge the security arrangements because we want to ensure the sanctity and credibility of our examinations,” the Head of National Office of WAEC, Very Rev. Samuel Nii Nmai Ollennu, told the Junior Graphic.
The measures, he said, were based on recommendations from a committee set up to investigate the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) leaks last year.
Last year WAEC cancelled five subject papers in the BECE which were Papers 2 of English Language; Religious and Moral Education; Integrated Science; Mathematics, and Social Studies.
The cancellation followed the discovery by the council that those papers had leaked.
Very Rev. Ollennu said the new security arrangements had worked well and expressed the hope that it would help prevent any form of examination leaks this year and beyond.
The measures, he said, were used during the General Business Certificate Examination (GBCE), Advanced Business Certificate Examination (ABCE) and the November-December West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) last year as well as the 2016 private BECE.
“We wish to assure the public that all is being done to have this year’s series of examinations conducted leakage-free,” he added.
Very Rev. Ollennu said no one could escape blame for the BECE leaks last year, and that in the course of investigations some candidates mentioned parents, teachers and school authorities as having given them the leaked questions.
“For instance last year when the leakage occurred, we were able to trace some of the sources to school authorities so headmasters and school teachers were arrested because the candidates indicated that they were the sources of the leaked questions they had.”
“In some of the cases, the candidates mentioned that the questions were given to them by their parents,” he said.
According to Very Rev. Ollennu, it was important that stakeholders joined the fight to deal with the canker of examination malpractices, and that nobody should think that it was the responsibility of the WAEC alone.
Failure to do that, he said, would not augur well for national development since the wrong people would be put in good and responsible positions.