The National Examination Council (NECO) has withheld the results of over 30,000 candidates in public schools in Niger State, due to the inability of the state government to pay their examination fees.
The students are currently unable to access their NECO May/June SSCE, results released on August 27, 2019. Students of public secondary schools that reached out to newsmen bemoaned their inability to access their results in order to attend post-UTME screenings of the universities of their choice.
The state government has admitted they are owning the examination body N400 million, adding that they have paid N150 million. Permanent Secretary of the Niger State Ministry of Education, Abubakar Aliyu, when contacted yesterday admitted that they are owning the examination body but appealed for consideration to enable the students to access their results especially those due for post-UTME screenings.
“The state government has been paying NECO and WAEC for its students from the previous administrations and the arrangement has always been that when the government has funds, we pay. NECO is owed N400 million this year and the government has commenced the payment. Last week Friday, we remitted N150 million to them and we are still negotiating with them to release the result but they have not. Hopefully, they may release it today (Monday).”
He said the state does not have enough money to pay NECO at once, assuring that they will pay whenever funds are available, adding that if the results are not released before the end of today (Monday), they would look for other ways of settling the debts. He added that one of the Directors in the Ministry was in a meeting with NECO, as of the time of filing this report.
“For us, as a government, we do not have money to release at once but as a responsive government, we have a clear picture of what we want to do. Once we get money, we will give them. Within the available resources, we have given what we have and we will continue to give them what we have until we clear the accumulated debts.”