The Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin South, Reverend John Ntim Fordjour, has cautioned the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) to take precautionary measures to avoid the leakage of examination papers for the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) which began yesterday.
He again urged parents, heads of educational institutions, teachers, students, security officials and printing press operators to team up to avoid the leakages of examination papers.
He said any leakage of the papers, as experienced in previous examinations, would compromise the integrity of the country's educational system and affect the credibility of Ghanaian students.
Scale of leakage
Making a statement on the floor of Parliament, Rev. Fordjour said the overwhelming scale of leakages of examination papers characterising the past decade was of serious concern.
He said the phenomenon kept recurring despite assurances by WAEC of strict measures.
"It gives me no delight to recount the massive leaks of examination papers - the cancellation of BECE papers in 2002; the cancellation of West African Secondary Schools Certificate Examination (WASSCE) papers in 2008; and recently in 2015, the cancellation of five BECE papers.
"The most embarrassing of the menace occurred in 2016 where amidst the viral transmission of examination questions on various social media platforms hours prior to the scheduled exams WAEC failed to concede the leakage but rather insisted on describing the incident as foreknowledge of the questions before commencement of examination," he said.
A total of 468,053 candidates will write this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) which commenced yesterday,June 5 to June 9, 2017.
Out of the total number of candidates, 241,148 are males, while 226,905 are females.
Musah Yahaya Jafaru
Rev. Fordjour condemned the blame game that followed the leakages instead of fostering effective collaboration to protect the integrity of the examinations.
He said although the government was not expected to unduly interfere in the activities of WAEC, it could not look on unconcerned for the examination leakages to jeopardise the integrity of the country's educational system and the future prospects of Ghanaian students.
"The grave repercussions exacted on our society by this perennial challenge of WAEC examination leakages cannot be overemphasised. The credibility of certificates awarded by WAEC in Ghana is at stake. The psychological and financial strain that parents and innocent students are subjected to in preparations for resit in events of exam cancellation is traumatising," he said.
Rev. Fordjour lauded WAEC for successfully conducting the just ended 2017 WASSCE examination without any leakage of examination papers.
He said the accomplishments ought not to be temporary but rather must be sustained through formidable reforms.