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GCE Certificates To Bear Candidates’ Photos 

By Elvis Tah

The Registrar of the Cameroon General Certificate of Education, GCE, Board, Humphrey E. Monono, has said plans are underway to print candidates’ passport size photographs on their certificates.

"With the Optical Mark Reader, OMR, we are also planning to produce certificates with pictures in the nearest future. We are yet to obtain authorisation from the Examination Executive Council, EEC, and the Minister of Secondary Education. We also need financial support because the process is very costly," the Registrar said. He pointed out that the innovation is to personalise the certificates and to avert impersonation by some unscrupulous examination candidates.

The Registrar revealed to The Post, while reacting to some pertinent concerns that almost perturbed this year’s GCE marking session. According to a memorandum signed by the English Language Examiners and addressed to the Registrar, the examiners were not in concordant with the fact that their marking days was reduced to five instead of sixteen days.

The memo reads in parts: "we use to mark Directed Writing and Composition in two separate booklets, because of their cumbersome nature and we were paid FCFA 200 for per script. This year, the two sections were lumped together in one script and only FCFA 200 was paid for them. It is our fervent wish that these two sections be written in two separate booklets and treated as such as in the previous years. We also appeal strongly that the fee per script should be raised from FCFA 200 to FCFA 300." The examiners also raised other concerns like victimisation of their colleagues by the GCE Board for expressing their worries, the need for the Registrar to have a working session with the examiners at the start of every marking session.

Meanwhile, the Registrar told The Post that marking started on June 29 and ended on July 9 (12 days). "I am very satisfied that the exercise ended peacefully despite the last minute tussle we had with the French and English Ordinary Level (O/L) panels. They were clamouring, asking me to give more than five days for O/L, which was a legitimate right; no doubt, but, the right was only limited to just two of the panels," Monono said.

He pointed out that every other subject had its peculiarities because some of the concerns have to be attended to by EEC, while others have to be solved by the Minister of Secondary Education. "Because of the need to have the scripts marked faster, we had many more trained examiners as well as new recruits. In some subjects, we had more than a hundred who had to be trained and also to harmonise the marking scheme," the Registrar said.

He adds, "We usually take about a day or two for the trial marking to prepare and agree on the marking scheme. That is why the examiners are claiming that they go beyond five marking days." He said some of the examiners are claiming that they are being victimised when they are not selected because the Board always train new examiners and those who don’t measure up to standard are rejected.

Wrong HB Pencil Usage 

The Registrar allayed fears that some candidates who used the wrong HB pencils might fail the exam because the scanner might not be able to read their answers.

"We have taken measures to solve the problem of wrong use of HB pencils by some examination candidates. We have verified to ensure that the scanner read all what was on the forms." "There are secretariat workers who were recruited to check out on that. I went round the centres and made sure that forms that were a little bit humid were prepared and re-read," Monono assured. 

Publication Of Results

On when the results will be published, he said, because the Board needs enough time to deliver honest, sincere and reliable results, it will be published during the first week of August.  
The Registrar stressed that the Board is not going to sell result booklets this year like the previous years.

"The production of booklets cost us a lot. Windows and doors were pulled down and that was the source of some leakage while we were still preparing the results," the Registrar said.
He pointed out that results are not results when the Minister of Secondary Education has not appended his signature and give the go ahead for it to be published.

"Some unscrupulous people take a page of past GCE results, change the date and start deceiving people that it was authentic results for that year and float them on the internet."
"We don’t publish results on the internet because anything can happen. The GCE Board reserves the right to withdraw results or certificates after publication, should we have information that warrants us to do an investigation. But if the results are posted on the net, how do we withdraw them," the Registrar quipped.

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