The 64th Annual Meeting of The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has ended in Accra, Ghana with the election of Ghana’s Chief Government Nominee on Council, Mr. Jacob Kor, as Vice Chairman for a one-year tenure.  He succeeds Hon. Dr. Romelle Horton of Liberia.

The President of Ghana, H. E. John Dramani Mahama  congratulates the three winners of WAEC Excellence AwardsThe meeting, which was held from Tuesday, March 15 to Friday, March 18, 2016, was formally declared open by His Excellency, John Dramani Mahama, President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Ghana.

In his keynote address on the occasion, President Mahama described WAEC as a dominant global brand conducting credible examinations across the West African sub-region.  He commended the founding fathers of WAEC for their vision, and Board Members and staff for their commitment to excellence.  He expressed appreciation to the Council for assisting the Member Governments to achieve their goals and objectives in the education sector, citing in particular the Republic of Ghana where the statistics and reports generated by the Council were utilized by the Ministry of Education in policy formulation and implementation.  The President noted with delight that the Council had commenced the conduct of the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) for private candidates in Ghana to create additional opportunity for the candidates.  He urged the Council not to relent in the fight against examination fraud in order to safeguard the integrity of its examinations.

Also speaking at the ceremony, the Chairperson of Council, Dr. D. Evelyn S. Kandakai, expressed appreciation to the Member Governments of WAEC for doing everything necessary to ensure the success and continued existence of the Council. She thanked all the stakeholders for the confidence reposed in the leadership of Council, and re-affirmed her commitment to repositioning the organisation as a shining example of success in regional cooperation and integration and an icon in educational assessment.

The week-long meeting was attended by delegates from the Member Countries of WAEC - The Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.  Among the delegates were the nominees of governments, representatives of Ministries/Departments of Education, universities, teachers’ associations and other interests.

Council, which is the main Governing Board and highest decision-making organ of The West African Examinations Council, holds its meeting annually in rotation among the five Member Countries. At the 64th Meeting, it considered reports from its national and international committees on various aspects of the operations of the organisation and ratified the decisions taken on its behalf in the course of the preceding year by the committees.  It also deliberated on the action plans presented by the offices and committees to ensure smooth and successful operations in the year ahead. It received from the leaders of the five Country delegations status reports on the activities, plans and programmes of their respective governments for improvement in the quality of education.  It noted with appreciation the laudable educational projects they had embarked upon in their countries.

During its deliberations, Council advised the WAEC Research Department, universities and other research institutions in the Member Countries to focus more on critical national issues, including examination malpractice, with a view to finding solutions to the emerging trends.  It also appealed to the researchers and research institutions to endeavour to make their research reports available to guide the Member Governments in policy formulation and implementation.

Council noted with appreciation the move by the Government of Liberia to rid the school system of unqualified teachers by providing for the present crop of auxiliary teachers access to professional training and other skill-related programmes, which could qualify them for more productive engagements in the various sectors of the country’s economy. It applauded the efforts being made by the Government of Nigeria to constantly review the education system of the country, adding that efforts should be made to continually motivate the teachers in order to check the current high rate of attrition and attract the best brains to the teaching profession.  It also urged the Nigerian Government to step up the training of more teachers to sustain the newly introduced trade subjects in the country’s school system and improve candidates’ performance in them.
Council commended the efforts of the Government of Sierra Leone at closing down illegal schools as a means of dismantling the enclaves of charlatans and fraudsters who were making the maintenance of educational standards difficult. Such steps, it was observed, should be taken in all the member countries along with the promulgation and enforcement of preventive legislations. While hailing the deployment of the Item Differentia Profile software by the Ghana National Office of WAEC to check malpractice in the objective tests, Council urged the other National Offices to deploy the technology in their countries after the ongoing piloting in Ghana.

The Council Meeting was preceded by the 21st in the series of the Annual WAEC Endowment Fund Lectures titled Performance in Mathematics: Breaking the Jinx, which was delivered by Professor Jonathan A. Fletcher, Dean of the School of Education and Leadership, University of Ghana.

At the opening ceremony, three candidates, all from Wesley Girls’ High School, Cape Coast, Ghana, received the WAEC Excellence Award for their outstanding performance in the May/June 2015 WASSCE taken by a total of 1,883,775 candidates in The Gambia, Ghana and Nigeria.  The candidates were Miss Jessica Ayeley Quaye (1st Prize), Miss Ruth Ewura-Ama Awadzi (2nd Prize) and Miss Danielle Amo-Mensah (3rd Prize). Miss Jessica Ayeley Quaye also won the Augustus Bandele Oyediran Award for the Best Candidate in West Africa.
Council congratulated the Republic of Ghana on winning the three prizes of the Excellence Awards and the Augustus Bandele Oyediran Award for four consecutive years (2012 - 2015).

The prestigious Award of Distinguished Friend of Council was also conferred on an eminent Ghanaian scholar and educationist, Professor Anthony A. Adimado, for his positive contribution to the work of WAEC.

At the end of the Meeting, the Registrar to Council, Dr. Iyi Uwadiae, expressed gratitude to all the secondary school teachers who worked as examiners, moderators, supervisors, invigilators, etc. to ensure the successful conduct of WAEC examinations. He also appreciated the various ICT service providers who were behind the success story of the Council’s ICT projects. He assured the stakeholders in education of the Council’s willingness and readiness at all times to collaborate with the Member Governments and their agencies in the implementation of initiatives that could significantly expand access to quality education and enhance manpower production in the West African sub-region.


Abiodun Aduloju
Head, Public Affairs

MARCH 24, 2016


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