WORRIED by the problem of abandoned certificates, the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has said it will deploy an Electronic Certificate Management System to facilitate the issuance of certificates to candidates.
The council’s Head, Public Affairs, Mr Damianus Ojijeogu disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Lagos.
According to him, the online system will enable the council to print certificates of candidates only on request.
“With this in place, it will assist the council in the decongesting backlog of certificates lying fallow for several years with very few owners coming up to collect them.
“With this in place, any candidate that wants his or her result will go online to make a request and leave an address of where it would be delivered.
“It does not matter where they wrote the examination.
“The process has reached an advanced stage and hopefully, by 2019, the mechanism would be deployed,’’ Ojijeogu said.
He said the deployment of the electronic device became necessary following the slow response by candidates in collecting their certificates several years after sitting for the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination.
Ojijeogu said that WAEC has been appealing to candidates yet to collect their certificates, but that the response had been very low.
“In 2014 alone, we placed several advertorials in some newspapers appealing with those concerned to come forward for their certificates as they are taking up too much space in our offices.
“We did need not to get any meaningful response.
“Certificates as far back as the 1980s are still lying fallow in our office with their owners not making attempt to come to collect them, moreover, the number will be staggering if we should put them together.
“Currently, the practice has been that if certificates should stay in our custody for more than four years, the owners will be charged with a custody fee of N5,000 on collection excluding the N3,500 for the collection of such certificate.’’
According to him, certificates of candidates who wrote the 2017 Nov/Dec WASSCE, Private, have since been printed and ready for collection in all the council’s offices across the country.
“Some persons who have written the examination repeatedly and failed are not willing to collect their certificates unless they are compelled to do so.
“They only come around to request for it probably as part of visa requirement, job interview or screening at workplaces in offices.
“This is not supposed to be so. They wrote the examination and it is only proper that they come for their certificates,” Ojijeogu said