Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says Imo State, for the third year running, topped the number of applications for this year’s Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) with 92,890 candidates.
The state was closely followed by Oyo (86,695) and Osun with 86,044 applicants.
Sokoto, Zamfara and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) had the least applicants with 13,456, 10,077 and 6,418 candidates.
Registrar Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, who gave the figures, said 367 virtually impaired persons would join 1.6 million candidates to write this year’s UTME tomorrow.
The UTME, Oloyede said, would hold in 605 Computer Base Test (CBT) centres approved by JAMB across the country.
The registrar, who spoke in Abuja yesterday, said the board received a shortfall of 55,642 (3.2 per cent) in the sale of 2018 UTME application documents when compared to the 1.7 million applications it received last year.
The decrease, according to him, was because of innovative measures introduced in the system by the board to forestall multiple registrations and cut other illicit practices by candidates.
He said: “At the end of the two months application window, we realised that 1,662,763 candidates registered for the 2018 exam. This was contrary to 1,718,425 candidates that registered for same exam within a month and two weeks period in 2017.
“A total of three hundred and sixty-seven virtually impaired candidates registered for this year’s examination as against the 201 last year.
“The board will continue to provide all necessary support and logistics to the physically-challenged candidates for them to attain their educational pursuit. The Equal Opportunity Group under Prof. Okebukola, who assisted last year, will be conducting the examination for the virtually impaired candidates.”
He said the board would not release the results of the UTME immediately because it wants to review the entire process after the examination.
This, the registrar said, would help reduce the number of cancelled results at the end of the exercise.
“We will not release the results immediately this year because last year, we wanted to prove a point that there was nothing extraordinary in immediate release but we know that that is not global best practices. Because we had to cancel some results as a result of what we found out later.
“This year, if it takes us one, two and three days to look at those things, we will look at them before we release the results so as to minimise the number of cancellation that we will do,” he said.
The registrar also said the board would pay N600 per candidate to write the examination at any approved CBT centre.
He said the payment was to discourage candidates from paying any amount to examination centres.