By Aplefe Ojong
Alleged irregularities trailed the just concluded recruitment of science teachers into the Cross River State Secondary Education Board.
CrossRiverWatch gathered that the State government had contracted an Indian firm, EDUCOM to handle the said recruitment in February, this year.
Sources also informed us that qualified candidates were short listed for the theoretical interview, where some who scored the prescribed grades were further invited for the oral interview on a later date.
However, it was learnt that when the result of the interview was subsequently released after the Indian firm had submitted it to the State Commissioner for Education, it was discovered to have been allegedly doctored to favour applicants who had performed poorly and some who did not even participate in the entire exercise.
Worried by the development, most of the applicants who felt short-changed have thronged the office of the State Secondary Education Board with their complaints against the list released by the Board and are calling for the remarking of their interview scripts.
A female applicant who would not want her name in the story to avoid being victimized showed CrossRiverWatch a text message sent to her after her success in the written examinations, which reads thus: “Dear, pursuant to the written exams of Chemistry and Biology, you are requested to appear for the interview on 16 March 2015 at NYSC at 11am. MOE CRSG and EDUCOMP Solutions, Nigeria Ltd.”.
She explained that when she got to the place she was shock to find out that a different name replaced her own name while the number remained that of her own.
The other applicant who also spoke to us on condition of anonymity said ” I did not see myself failing this interview because the subjects were within my area of specialization. I want to believe that this is not the original list released by the interviewing firm.”
We gathered from competent sources that the list also allegedly contained the names of individuals who did not apply for the teaching appointment, while all those who submitted their written complaints on the alleged irregularities were told to report at the Secondary Education Board on Thursday, April 30, 2015, for further action.
CrossRiverWatch learnt that when the affected applicants visited the State Secondary Education Board on Thursday, April 30, 2015 as they were directed, they were told to remain patient as the management was looking into their complaints.
“This is to inform applicants who had registered complaints arising from the recruitment exercise to exercise patience as the Board is doing all it can to address their complaints,” a notice attributed to the management said.
“They are advised to wait within two (2) weeks from today, 29th April, 2015 for the Board to address their complaints,” it added, maintaining that “the Board also regrets any inconveniences this might caused the applicants.”
Addressing the candidates, one of the principal Officers of the Board, appealed to them to be patient and disciplined in their efforts to seek redress for their complaints.
At the State Ministry of Education, Calabar, reliable sources told us that a management meeting was held Monday to consider the issues raised by the affected applicants.
According to the sources, chief among the complaints were, wrong entry of results for applicants, mix-matching of names and examination numbers and entry of “no data” or “absent” for other applicants who had attended the interview.
Our sources further hinted that the management had resolved to collate all the complaints from aggrieved applicants and hand same to EDUCOMP, for appropriate action within the specified two weeks.
As at the time of filling this report both the Chairman of the Board and the Commissioner for Education could not be reached for comments.
Since You Are Here, Support Good Journalism
CrossRiverWatch was founded on the ideals of deploying tech tools to report in an ethical manner, news, views and analysis with a narrative that ensures transparency in governance, a good society and an accountable democracy.
Everyone appreciates good journalism but it costs a lot of money. Nonetheless, it cannot be sacrificed on the altar of news commercialisation.
Consider making a modest contribution to support CrossRiverWatch's journalism of credibility and integrity in order to ensure that all have continuous free access to our noble endeavor.