•Thousands of uncollected certificates in waec custody
There are thousands of unclaimed certificates in the custody of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC), an official of the council has said.
According to this official (who preferred not to be named because he was not authorised to speak with the press), WAEC has printed certificates up to November/December 2013.
“Many of us are guilty of this. Take me, for example. I did my own exam in 1983. But it was only last year that I collected my certificate. As I have told you, all certificates up to November/December 2013 are ready for collection. I am sure those for May/June 2014 are either ready now or will be very soon,” he said.
Reports from states across the country also indicated that in the aftermath of the controversy surrounding the school certificate of General Muhammadu Buhari, All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, schools have started receiving requests for hitherto unclaimed certificates.
In some schools visited by Saturday Tribune in Lagos, Oyo and Osun states, it was learnt that in the last one week, there had been an unusual increase in the number of old people either turning up personally or sending proxies to collect their certificates.
A senior newspaper editor based in Lagos, who did not want her name mentioned, confirmed to Saturday Tribune that she sent her sister to Baptist Girls High School, Osogbo, Osun State, to inquire on how she could collect her school certificate which had been with the school since 1983 (32 years ago).
“I never though I would need it because I used the statement of results I got from the school in 1983 for admission into the university. I never really gave it a thought until this Buhari matter came up. I have sent my sister to my alma mater. She met quite a number of others with the same mission there on Thursday. We are required to bring a passport photograph, the statement of result and a letter of authorisation for the proxy to collect it on my behalf,” she told Saturday Tribune on Friday.
In a move to combat the trend of uncollected certificates, the WAEC official told Saturday Tribune that the organisation had said uncollected certificates for November/December General Certificate of Education (O/A Levels), and Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE), private, would, from January 30 this year, attract charges.
A recent statement published by the council was made available to Saturday Tribune on Thursday, in which it advised candidate to come and collect their certificates.
The statement read in parts: “…the council wishes to advise candidates who sat previous diets of the November/December General Certificate of Education Ordinary/Advance Levels (GCE O/A Levels), and Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) (Private) who have not collected their certificates to do so at WAEC zonal, branch or satellite offices not later than Friday, 30th January, 2015.
“Candidates who fail to collect their certificates after that date may be charged an extra fee for the custody of the certificates.”
The notice also emphasised that certificates up to November / December 2013 are ready for collection at schools and WAEC offices.
“Certificates up to May/June 2013 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), conducted by WAEC, have been printed and dispatched to schools for collection by candidates. In addition, certificates up to November/December 2013 WASSCE (Private) have also been printed and are awaiting collection by candidates at WAEC offices nationwide.
“Candidates for May/June examination diets are advised to collect their certificates from their former schools, while those for November/December examination diets are advised to collect their certificates at WAEC zonal, branch or satellite offices in the states where they sat for the examinations.”
When contacted on Friday, the Public Relations officer of WAEC, Lagos Office, Mr Ojijeogu Demianus, said while it was not possible to give the actual figure of the certificates in their custody, they were in their thousands.
“I cannot immediately confirm the total figure because these certificates are distributed among our zonal offices. But, yes, there are thousands of them. Many people wait up to 20 years before they begin to request for these certificates, and that excludes May/June examination certificates, because those ones are left with the schools. What we have with us are the certificates for private candidates, that is, November/December.”