Bill increasing penalty for WAEC offences scales second reading
A bill, which revises upward the penalties for malpractices in the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) examinations, has passed second reading in the House of Representatives.
It seeks to amend Section 19 of the principal law to include more penalties.
The Executive Bill, which was brought before members by the Majority Leader, Mulikat Akande-Adeola (PDP), was referred to the House Committee on Education by Speaker Aminu Tambuwal, after it was passed yesterday.
Presenting the bill before members, the Majority Leader said it was to act as a deterrent to examination malpractices.
According to the lawmaker, because of the high rate of examination malpractices, the council thought it fit to amend Section 19 of the principal law by providing the offences constituting such malpractices to include:
“Illegal possession of examination papers; having foreknowledge of the contents of an examination paper or making use of an examination paper or the contents of it/in any manner whatsoever without lawful authority.
“The Bill also provides through the amendment of sections 20 and 21 of the principal Act, a stiffer penalty of N200.000 fine instead of N2.000 and provision for disqualification and prohibition of a candidate, notwithstanding criminal prosecution of such cheaters.”
The Majority Leader said the passage of the bill “will further guarantee the standard of examination, which is at its abysmal level at this point in time. There will be examination standardisation in Nigeria through the effective supervision by WAEC, which hitherto had been eroded.”
Akande-Adeola said Nigeria is a heavy contributor of fund to the council, with considerable number of representatives on it, but is yet to domesticate the 2003 convention.
“Notwithstanding the fact that Nigeria has ratified the convention, it is the only country out of the five constituting the council membership, which has not domesticated the convention.”