No fewer than 25 former candidates who sat for either the school or privates examinations conducted by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) and are born again Christians have returned their certificate claiming it was acquired through fraudulent means. Sunday Sun learnt that the affected born again former candidates in obeying the Christian doctrine of seeking for restitution, approached WAEC, through letters and personal visits to the council, seeking for restitution after they had confessed how they acquired their certificates when they wrote the examinations at various periods. A senior staff of WAEC disclosed that the council wrote to the candidates explaining what they were ex-pected to do which is to return the certificates in accordance with the rules and regulations guiding the conduct of the examinations.
Investigations revealed that those who complied with the directive returned their certificates to various WAEC offices nationa wide, and the council took their cases to the Nigeria Examinations Committee (NEC), which met recently in Lagos and cancelled the returned 25 certificates. The one-page WAEC document revealed that the returned certificates by the born again Christians are for both the May/June (school exam) and November/December (private candidates) West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
Breakdown of the year the examinations were taken revealed that the oldest certificates dates back to June 1980 with certificates dated 1986 for Nov/Dec with certificates nos NGPO497232 and NGO 442267 and three obtained in 1989, all for school examinations with certificates nos NGPO 1004584, NGPO 823128 and NGO 1002145.
In the1993 Nov/Dec exam, two candidates sought restitution and returned their certificates, while 1994, 1997,1999, 2000, 2006, 2008,and 2009, one person each returned their certificates. In 2001, three did so, in 2003 (two), 2004 (three) and in the May/June school examinations, two candidates returned their certificates. Seventeen of former WAEC candidates that returned their certificates wrote the May/June West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) and eight sat for the Nov/Dec WASSCE.
A former principal and now proprietor of Royal Academy International, Oshodi, Mr. Olatunji Ogunmode, commended the candidates for seeking restitution after many years of acquiring the certificates, and urged several others to obey the Biblical command. Ogunmode warned other candidates in future WAEC exams to stay clear of examination malpractices, noting that if they were not caught in the classroom for exam fraud, nemesis would certainly catch up with them, no matter how long it takes.
Pastor Miracle Wisdom said the 25 former WAEC candidates by returning the certificates they acquired wrongly are obeying the Christian doctrine by seeking for restitution, and that no matter how long it took them to come forward, their past sins are forgiven. Wisdom was however silent on what happens to higher certificates the 25 candidates used the WAEC certificates to acquire, nothing “the most important thing is that they came forward to admit how they passed their exams. It is a welcome development, it would make others not to engage in exam fraud.’’
The pastor said there are several verses in the Bible to support restitution which conform to what the 25 born again Christians did by confessing their sins and seeking for restitution from WAEC. John 1:9 says ‘’If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness’’. While Number 5:6-7 says ’’When a man or woman commits any of the sins that people commit by breaking faith with the Lord, and that person realizes his guilt, he shall confess his sin that he has committed.[a] And he shall make full restitution for his wrong.’’