Gambia May Miss WAEC Exams Over US$11 To US$12 Million Arrears

The permanent secretary at the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education has disclosed to lawmakers that pupils and students in The Gambia risk missing both the West Africa Senior School Certificate Education (WASSCE) and the Gambia Basic Education Certificate Examination (GABECE) this year due to arrears owed to the West African Examination Council (WAEC).

Speaking during an interface with the National Assembly joint committee on education and public finance on the recent teachers strike, Louis Moses Mendy, lamented that his ministry faces acute financial constraints which among others led to the recent teachers strike as well possibility of missing out on examinations conducted by WAEC.

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He continues by saying, the country owes the council between US$11 and US$12 million, 50 percent of which must be paid as stipulated by the new WAEC adminstration, or the country risks missing WAEC exams. According to PS Mendy, his ministry had a meeting with the new WAEC chairman in January where they were briefed about some new actions to be taken by the council at its annual meeting next month.

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“One of the decisions is that we must pay our arrears as a country. Initially, they put it at 50% and our WAEC arrears are over US$10 to US$12 million, 50% of that is over D350 million, PS Mendy revealed.

He explained that these arrears were owned to WAEC for the conduct of examinations for Gambia students writing grade 9 and 12 examinations including printing of exam papers and DHL sending fees among others.

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