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Imo has highest number of UTME candidates




…beats 8 northern states combined

Whereas 98,028 candidates from eight northern states and Federal Capital Territory sat for this year’s Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, Imo State had 104,383 candidates, CHARLES ABAH reports

Details of the 2016 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination emerged on Monday with Imo State indigenes topping the list of applicants that sat for the examination.

The state topped the state of origin statistics table with 104,383 (about 6.56 per cent) of the 1,592,305 million candidates that sat for the examination conducted by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board this year.

This comes as only 14,242 candidates from both Kebbi and Zamfara states applied for the examination. Whereas only 5,295 candidates from Zamfara State sat for the examination, 8,947 others from Kebbi State sat for the qualifying examination to the nation’s higher institutions.

The Computer-based examination for entrance to the universities, polytechnics and colleges of education, which held between February 27 and March 23, took place in 540 centres in Nigeria and eight overseas countries.

The countries are Benin Republic, Cameroun, Cote D’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and the United Kingdom.

Delta State came second on the table with 78,854 candidates (4.95) in the examination in which only 25,445 of the 1,592,305 million candidates applied to study Agriculture.

The third on the table is Anambra State, which produced 77,694 or 4.88 per cent of the candidates.

Imo State, a reliable source in JAMB confided in our correspondent, has remained on top of the table for many years.

In the examination, which only 24,160 Lagos State indigenes sat for, their Osun State counterpart had 72,752 candidates, placing it in the fourth position.

The statistics obtained exclusively by our correspondent also revealed that Oyo State, with 72,298 candidates (4.54 per cent), came fifth, while Enugu State placed sixth with 69,381 candidates or 4.36 per cent.

In the seventh position is Edo State with 66,107 or 4.15 per cent of the candidates, while Ogun State placed eighth with 62,973 candidates.

Ogun State, with over 15 universities and polytechnics, has the highest number of tertiary institutions in the country. It has 10 private universities comprising the Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo; Covenant University, Ota; Bell University, Ota, established by former President Olusegun Obasanjo and the Crawford University, Igbesa.

Others are Chrisland University, Abeokuta; Mountain Top University, Ibafo; Christopher University on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, McPherson University, Seriki-Sotayo; Hallmark University, Ijebu-Itele, and the Crescent University, Abeokuta, founded by the former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Prince Bola Ajibola.

Akwa Ibom State, which placed ninth, had 62,369 candidates, while Benue State, in the 10th position, led the pack from the 19 states in the North with 60,160 candidates.

Kogi State placed 11th on the rankings with 57,694 candidates, whereas Kwara State, which accommodates the University of Ilorin, had 54,606 candidates.

UNILORIN, as in the last two years, still occupies the first slot in terms of attracting the highest number of applicants. One hundred and three thousand, two hundred and thirty-eight candidates applied to study in the university this year.

The University of Benin, Edo State, with 81,363 candidates and the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Kaduna State, with 75,383 candidates, came second and third respectively.

Fifty-six-year-old University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, attracted 65,954 candidates to place fourth, while Bayero University, Kano (64,220), and the Nnamdi Azikwe University, Awka (61,862) came fifth and sixth respectively.

The University of Lagos, with 60,659 candidates, is placed seventh ahead of the nation’s oldest ivory tower, University of Ibadan, with 59,176 candidates. In last year’s rankings, 68-year-old UI was placed seventh while UNILAG was fifth.

Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, retained the ninth position it occupied in 2015. This year, it attracted 45,924 candidates.

The University of Jos, which was not among the top 10 sought, after universities in 2015, improved on its rankings, placing 10th this year with 40,366 candidates.

For the private universities, the Covenant University, Ota; Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State; Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo; and the Igbinedion University, Benin, Edo State, occupied the first four positions in terms of attracting candidates’ interest. They had 2, 586; 1,304, 1,248 and 418 candidates in that order.

Missing on top 10 private universities among candidates are the Bell University, Ota and the American University of Nigeria, Yola, Adamawa State, founded by former Vice-President, Atiku Abubakar.

The Madonna University, Okija, Anambra State (370); Bowen University, Iwo (329); Al-Qalam University, Katsina (308) and the Baze University, FCT (277) came fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth in that order.

The Bingham University, Karu, with 247 candidates, and the Benson Idahosa University, Benin, Edo State, with 204 candidates, occupied the ninth and 10th positions, out of the over 60 private universities in the country.

Still on the rankings, the lowest 10 states in terms of applicants are Niger, Borno, Taraba, Adamawa, Jigawa, Yobe, Sokoto, Kebbi, Zamfara and FCT.

While 18,231 Niger State indigenes applied for tertiary education this year, Borno and Taraba states had 15,697 and 15,672 candidates respectively. Adamawa, Jigawa, Yobe and Sokoto had 15,615,12,664, 10,045, and 10,006 in that order. FCT had only 4,087 candidates.

Meanwhile, of the 1,592,305 million candidates that sat for the examination, only 68,481 candidates applied to study Education.

Social Sciences topped the faculty table with 362,567 candidates.

The breakdown further reveals that whereas 336,694 candidates sought to study Medicine, 95,182 others applied to study Law.

Engineering/Technical/Environmental courses with 228,195 candidates attracted a higher number of applicants than Administration and Arts/Humanities, which posted 88,029 candidates.

Similarly, 217,150 candidates considered Sciences this year.

In a related development, 565,479 or 10.46 per cent of the entire candidates, who sat for the examination, scored 200 out of possible 400 marks.

Also, 821,095 or 15.20 per cent scored 190 and above, while 1,053,979 or 19.50 per cent scored 180 and above.

The cumulative performance statistics also revealed that 1,370,837 or 25.37 per cent candidates obtained 170 and above, whereas 1,474,999 or 27.30 per cent got 160 and above.

At the rung of the ladder are 117, 290 or 2.17 per cent candidates that scored below 160 marks.

The JAMB Registrar, Prof. Dibu Ojerinde, had two weeks ago announced that 180 marks would be the minimum score for any candidate seeking admission to the nation’s higher institutions this year.

The carrying capacity of all tertiary institutions in the country this year, a reliable source at the National Universities Commission told our correspondent on Monday, was 695,449.

The source also revealed that of the 1,592,305 applicants, 1,557,017 of them, representing 97.78 per cent, applied for university education, while 17,673 or 1.11 per cent sought admission to the colleges of education.

Seventeen thousand five hundred and eight-four, representing 1.10 candidates, applied for National Diploma in the polytechnics. The remaining 31 applicants, representing 0.002 per cent, applied for NID.