The Principal of the Ikoyi Prison School in Lagos state, has opened up on how inmates of the facility participated in the recently concluded Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.
59 inmates of the Ikoyi Prisons Lagos on Wednesday and Thursday sat for the on-going Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.
The figure was an improvement over the 32 that sat for the examination in 2016.
The Principal of the Ikoyi Prison School, Mr Idris Ibikunle, said that the candidates were better prepared this year, adding that he was expecting a better performance.
“More inmates registered for the examination this year because they saw the urge to secure their future and prepare for reintegration after their prison terms. Many of them have realised that they ought not to be in prison if they were educated.
“It is because of lack of education and lack of awareness that pushed some of them into getting involved in dirty habit and anti-social behaviour which landed them in prison.
“Some of them, because of lack of education, were cajoled into participating in criminal activities,’’ Ibikunle said.
The principal added that the prison authority had supported the inmates in preparing for the examination.
Ibikunle noted that the inmates would proceed to the National Open University of Nigeria if they meet up admission requirements.
The Deputy Controller of Prisons, Mr Julius Ezeugwu, said that the examination was conducted without any hitch, adding that he was optimistic that the candidates would perform well.
Ezeugwu explained that the examination was taken in batches in order to allow for those who have court appearance to do so.
Mr Kunmi Popoola, the JAMB’s Director of Psychometrics, who supervised the centre, said that the board provided the Prisons School centre with 60 new computers and accessories for the conduct of the examination.
He commended the zeal of some of the inmates towards education as they conducted themselves well during the examination.
“I am happy with the conduct of the examination for the inmates, it was orderly and smooth. The examination is a reformative step and not punitive.
“Those who are about completing their jail terms, are getting ready to be re-integrated into the larger society,’’ Popoola said.
According to him, the JAMB Registrar, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, is very passionate about these class of candidates in ensuring that everyone is given equal opportunity.