General News of Wednesday, 2 April 2003

Source: gna

Basic School Certificate Examination begins on April 7

The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) on Tuesday said this year's Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) would begin from April 7 to 11 with 268,284 candidates, including 121,322 girls, writing eight to nine subjects.

Candidates from 7,105 schools would write the examination at 998 centres under 998 Supervisors.

The Upper East and West Regions have 7,577 and 5,064 candidates, respectively, whiles the Northern Region has 13, 403 candidates.

In an interview with the GNA in Accra the Reverend John A. Adotey, Acting Head of National Office, WAEC said Greater Accra has 53,183 candidates; Eastern Region has 33,055; Central Region has 27,582 and Western Region, 26,063.

The rest are Ashanti, 54,537; Brong Ahafo registered 23,727 and Volta, 24,093 candidates.

Last year 267,956 candidates took the examination.

Rev Adotey warned candidates and the public to be wary of individuals, who might claim to have examination question papers in their possession.

He urged the public to report such persons to the Council immediately. "We have however put in place a lot of security measures to ensure that the unfortunate incident with the 2002 BECE does not recur," he said.

The WAEC was in the process of establishing its own printing press.

Rev Adotey, therefore, called for the co-operation of the candidates, supervisors and the general public to ensure a successful examination, adding: "Examinations can only be successful with the co-operation of the public."

He asked candidates to study hard and to avoid relying or looking for "leaked" papers.

Rev Adotey hinted that candidates, who would be found cheating would be penalized stressing that they would either have their entire results cancelled or their subjects results cancelled and be barred for three years from writing the Council's examinations."

Rev Adotey urged supervisors to be vigilant to curb irregularities that occurred during examinations.

He further cautioned heads of institutions to instil discipline in their candidates and ensure that candidates were well prepared for the examinations.

"Some heads of institutions encourage their students to cheat and this is not right.

"Invigilators, who are found condoning with candidates would be referred to the Ghana Education Service for disciplinary action to be taken against them," he said.

Rev. Adotey appealed to parents and guardians to desist from encouraging their children and wards to cheat, saying: "Some parents do not supervise their children to study and at the eleventh hour want to do everything to ensure that they get the best grades."