From Blessing Ibunge, Port Harcourt
The Rivers State Commissioner for Education, Prof Kaniye Ebeku, has announced that the registration of candidates for the 2020 Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) has been extended to Friday, August 28, this year.
This as the commissioner said that the Ministry is working assiduously to ensure a smooth conduct of the examination across the state.
He said the extension followed pleas by principals and administrators of both public and private schools to enable them to conclude necessary processes of registration for their candidates.
Speaking during a meeting with Zonal Directors, Rivers State representatives of the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS) and All Nigeria Confederation of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCORPS), on Monday, Prof Ebeku solicited the support of all schools in the state for the overall success of the examination.
He said, “On the part of the Ministry, we are working day and night to ensure that the examination is conducted seamlessly.
“We want to ensure that there will be no problems, that there will be no shortfall, that there will be no difficulties of any kind.
“You will also ensure that your sitting arrangements are COVID-19 protocol compliant. Arrange to ensure social and physical distancing in seating arrangements.
“I want all hands to be on deck. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to make suggestions.
“We want to ensure that the whole process is participatory and everybody is onboard.”
On illegal collection of fees, the Education Commissioner also cautioned principals, noting that any principal culpable will face sanctions.
He said, “I am aware that some principals in the junior secondary schools have been charging various sums of money for BECE for reasons best known to them.
“You have heard that the government is intolerant of corruption of any kind. We will not allow charges of any kind to be collected and consequences of breach apply.
“I receive information virtually on a daily basis of schools that have been charging money/fees. When we receive information we will react. You will be hearing the consequences as we go on.
“Please, use your platform and appeal to your members and colleagues. Please save your career, protect your office by not being moved by the temptation of doing what has been outlawed.”