Candidates seeking to sit for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology , Ogbomoso , on Monday were disappointed as students of the school prevented them from gaining access to the two centres located within the university. Our correspondent learnt these were the only centres in Ogbomoso .
This is just as the Head, Public Affairs , Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board , Mr . Fabian Benjamin , said that the candidates were likely to sit for the examination in Ilorin , Kwara State .
It was learnt that students of the institution had, as early as 7 am , barricaded the gates of the university, vowing that the UTME would not hold until academic activities in the school resumed . The students also prevented teaching and non – teaching staff of the institution from entering the school
Efforts to speak to the school registrar , Jacob Agboola , was not successful but a member of staff of the school , who did not want his name in print because he is not authorised to speak on behalf of the management , said the authority of the school had a meeting with JAMB officials where an alternative was decided .
He said , “ After the students refused to open the gates, the school authority had a meeting with JAMB officials for a long time. Several alternatives were weighed before it was decided that today ’ s ( Monday ) batches of candidates will have to be joined with Tuesday ’ s batches . However , they have to use an alternative venue because we do not want anything to happen to the candidates . We want to try as much as possible to manage this situation so that it will not degenerate into violence . ”
Speaking to one of our correspondents , Benjamin , however , said that JAMB did not cancel the centres .
He said , “ We did not cancel the centres . Students of the university blocked the road and said they would not allow candidates to write the examination. There is no other centre in the town .
“ We are rescheduling because this is not the fault of the candidates. Again we want to reiterate that we did not post any candidate outside his or her town of choice as expressed in their application , contrary to reports in some quarters . Candidates are always allowed to make a choice of examination town while we allocate centres within the town chosen by a candidate . ’’
Benjamin also denied the report that there were no closed circuit televisions in centres . “We deployed CCTV in all our centres . These are not so visible equipment but we deployed CCTV in all our centres , ’’ he said .
One of the LAUTECH students , who preferred anonymity , told one of our correspondents on the telephone that the students embarked on the action to draw attention of the two owner states to its poor condition .
She said , “ The school was closed for several months and it took the bold step of the students who staged a protest at the Oyo State secretariat in Ibadan before the state government took an action . After resumption of activities in the school , the condition has remained the same.
“ Locking the gate today against JAMB candidate was an opportunity to call on the two states to pay attention to the school . We have nothing against the candidates because we were in a similar position some years ago . Perhaps , what we are agitating for will one day benefit them and those who will come after them. ”