Dr. Aliyu Tilde, Bauchi state commissioner for education has told the state House of Assembly members who insisted that the Bauchi state government had to pay WAEC fees to all students this year until adequate awareness is created to repeal and replace the existing law and should state where the money for sponsorship will come from in the new law.
Dr. Tilde was responding to questions from members of the state’s assembly who summoned and grilled him over the recent protest staged by students of senior secondary school over government’s decision to downsize the number of students to benefit from WAEC sponsorship this year.
“But Laws are made by you, the legislature, if today Bauchi State Assembly make a law that the State Government should sponsor all students of SS3, I and the governor must obey. “The ball is in your court, if you wish you can repeal the law, but in making the law, you should state where the money will come from”, Dr Tilde insisted.
Dr Tilde reiterated his pledged to ensure things are done rightly and according to the law, adding that it was part of his promise during ministerial briefing.
“We have announced since November that only those who pass MOCK will be sponsored as the law stated. “We publicized it. “I posted the information even on my Facebook pages. “But they thought since it is a political government and we are in political era, they will find their ways so that it will be business as usual.
“I inquire why results of MOCK are not released, there was no concrete explanation. “I understand they were just allocating marks. I also discovered that all schools have the same answers meaning they have copied the answers directly from prepared answers.”
The commissioner said as part of measures to address the corruption tendencies of teachers, he had to contract some graduates who were former students of special schools who went round secondary schools to conduct the examinations for the SS3 students.
Dr Aliyu said “students were asked simple questions such as what are the items sold in your market? Many of them failed.”
He added that after the examination, 6017 passed, “We said it is too small. “We selected more from MOCK conducted previously. That’s how we arrive at 12000.”
In his contributions during the plenary, Hon. Gazali Abubakar (Ganjuwa East), said although he was satisfied with the explanations of the Commissioner, but argued that “change can’t happen overnight. “You have to do it bit by bit. “You should make your staff have sense of belonging, they are isolated. “You should identify hardworking staff that are like minds to change education sector and work with them.
Hon. Sabo Bako Sade (Sade Constituency) said the policies of the commissioner were good but advised that teachers should be held accountable in discharging their duties.
The speaker of the house, Hon. Abubakar Y. Suleiman thanked the commissioner of his insightful and satisfying explanations on the matter.
He said the House will sit and deliberate on the next line of action on the matter so as to resolve it in the interest of the masses.