Mr. Bendu said this, while making a presentation in a symposium organized by the College’s Student Union on the theme: “Examinations malpractices in Tertiary Institutions: Causes and Cure.”
In his statement, the ACC Officer, informed students about the premium ACC puts in curbing corrupt practices leading to examinations malpractices in the country. He said, the Commission has been partnering with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST) to pursue the same goal. He identified some of the causes of examination malpractices including: lack of integrity among Lecturers, Students, Examiners, School Administrators, Invigilators and Parents; faulty world view about survival by hook or crook; desperation to acquire qualifications; ill prepared candidates or learners; impunity of culprits; students not getting their priorities right, leading to more junk items in their time than they can manage to balance their studies, etc. He further reiterated that this dangerous phenomenon which has invaded the school culture of recent has very disastrous and far reaching effects on the academic respectability of the nation as a whole; the work force and Gross Development Product of the country. ‘This situation must stop’, the anti-graft officer emphasized. He noted that malpractices generally cover all corrupt practices that take place from the revision week, to the publication of results. The focus therefore, he intimated, must not only be on students but also on Lecturers and School Administrators – including examination officers and bodies.
Some of the remedies to this situation, Mr. Bendu highlighted are: the introduction of drastic penalties for culprits – be it Lectures or students; emphasizing and equipping Guidance Counseling Departments in Schools and Colleges; using technology such as CCTV to monitor examination centres, conference marking of exams scripts, etc.
The Public Education Officer mentioned the Pay No Bribe (PNB) campaign implemented by the ACC and its partners is supported by the Government of Sierra Leone and UK Aid, with the objective to improve on service delivery in public sector institutions. MEST is one of the MDAs piloted in the campaign, Mr. Bendu noted. He encouraged all to report bribery and petty corruption in colleges through the PNB free line 515 on all the networks, the mobile APP in Krio, Temne and Mende and visit the website www.pnb.gov.sl. The PNB reporting platform is anonymous and captures information on: I paid a Bribe, I did not pay a Bribe and I met an honest official, he concluded.
Student Union President of the CTM Cynthia Cole commended the ACC for their recent efforts in curbing exams malpractices in the country. She emphasized the use of technology in the fight against exams malpractice and promised to involve the ACC in future engagements of similar nature.
Other speakers in the symposium were representatives of the Attitudinal and Behavioral Change Secretariat and the College authorities. Gibril Turay, Lecturer of CTM, chaired the occasion, and Michael Woody, Outgoing Student Union President, moderated the plenary session.