Reps reject Motion Calling For Cancelation Of Examination Fees


The House of Representatives has stepped down a motion seeking to compel the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), West Africa Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO) to register students for free in the 2023-2024 examination cycle, to cushion the effect of the fuel subsidy removal.

The stepping down followed debate on the motion sponsored by Hon Anamero Dekeri.

Hon Dekeri while presenting the motion, had argued that making the examinations free would enable the common man benefit directly from the “fuel subsidy removal palliatives”, thereby giving them a sense of belonging.

He argued that the removal of fuel subsidies is affecting most Nigerians negatively, especially the low-income earners.

He noted that “profiteers” are exploiting the situation, thereby leading to the rising cost of living.

“One of the major challenges of the low-income earning parents is the education of their wards particularly in payment of examination fees.

“With the cooperation of the masses, the federal government was able to deliver Nigerians from a few individuals that took the nation’s economy hostage through fuel subsidy payment conduit pipe that has plundered this country’s economy for too long.

“As a result of the removal of fuel subsidy, the government may have saved approximately seventeen billion, two hundred million naira only, daily from a few cartels that have been sucking the poor masses.”

Lawmakers kicked against the motion, saying the government cannot be compelled to pay registration fees for students due for the examinations while some argued that the gesture should be extended to only students in public schools.

The House Majority Leader, Julius Ihonvbere, said rather than compelling government to make the examinations free, members should be encouraged to adopt schools in their constituency and pay for the students there.

There was a call to exempt students in private school from the proposal but Hon Awaji-Inombek Abiante, said that excluding students in private schools from any government policy would be discriminatory and against the spirit of the 1999 Constitution.

“We have taken an oath not to go against the constitution, and excluding some people would be discriminatory,” he said.

When the speaker, Tajudeen Abbas, who presided over plenary, put the question, the motion was rejected by voice vote.