Mr Donald Tuor, the Upper West Regional Controller of the West Africa Examination Council (WAEC), has observed that the conduct of the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) in the region was smooth and successful.
He said his outfit and the Ghana Education Service had done a lot of sensitisation on the examination before it started, which had contributed to the smoothness of the exercise.
Mr Tuor, who said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Wa, said the examination was, however, not without infractions as some irregularities were picked up at the centres.
“In terms of comportment it is okay but that is not to say we had not had issues of irregularities. A lot of sensitisation has gone in,” he explained.
He said there were instances where at some of the centres visited in the Wa Municipality, the teachers tried to teach the candidates, but rescinded because of the presence of the WAEC officials.
Mr Tuor said he called for the suspension of an invigilator for engaging in acts that contravened the WAEC examination rules and the victim left his or her duty post and went around announcing the presence of the WAEC official and telling the candidates to surrender any foreign material they might have had.
He said some people were also spotted at a centre suspected of answering examination questions from a mobile phone while the exams were ongoing, but they scaled a wall and bolted when the WAEC officials attempted to arrest them.
“Of course, you will see acts of omission when it comes to the part of the invigilators. For example, candidates are not allowed to go into the exam hall with the mathematical set covers.
But these were everywhere so we had to tell them to get them out. It did not mean that they were actively using them, but that is an act of omission,” he explained.
The Controller added that some invigilators were also seen invigilating from outside the exam hall, which was not WAEC standard as that could passively encourage the candidates to engage in malpractices.
“There was also a young man who acted as a currier picking worked solutions from somewhere, sources I suspect to be teachers, and then passing the information through the window to candidates, so we intercepted that, and we are working on it,” Mr Tuor said.
He said they also picked up a few foreign materials with students in some exam halls they visited and caught an invigilator with a mobile phone which he described as a serious offence.
“The rules are clear. As an invigilator you are not supposed to hold your phone until the end of the exams …,” he added.
The Controller said WAEC would use the “Item Differential Profile Software” to detect candidates who engaged in cheating.
A total of 13,329 candidates from 557 schools, comprising 6,602 males and 6,727 females, as well as about 150 private candidates participated in this year’s BECE in the region.