Authorities in Eastern Equatoria have called on the national Ministry of General Education and Instruction to reverse its decision to reduce the number of examination centers in the state.
This is after the National Examination Council last week disbanded 24 centers in the state and maintained only 3.
According to a statement seen by Eye Radio, Minister Awut Deng Achuil wrote a letter to Governor Louis Lobong indicating that only Nimule, Torit, and Kapoeta will be used as centers for this year’s secondary school examinations.
The exams are scheduled to begin on April 18 to April 27.
But the state government has rejected the designations, saying the move will deny thousands of candidates the chance to sit for their exams.
It described the unilateral decision by the national Ministry of Education as a violation of the rights to education for the children in the state.
Eastern Equatoria state parliament also cited the long distances to Torit, Nimule, and Kapoeta as the reason for its rejection.
It mentioned that candidates from remote areas would be exposed to untold security risks while traveling to the proposed locations.
Aliandro Lotok, the press secretary of Governor Louis Lobong told Eye Radio that the state authorities has rejected the decision.
“We cannot at this time reduce the 27- examination centers that have been existing in Eastern Equatoria given the fact that some candidates are in far locations,” Aliandro Lotok said.
“For you to transport the candidates from Chudukum to Kapoeta, the students, parents and the teachers are not prepared to throw them into risks of traveling these long distances.
“Taking these students and putting them into one location is still a risk as far as this is concerned. But the school feeding, security and accommodation, these are going to be some of the changes.”
In its resolution, the Eastern Equatoria state government said the 27 examination centers must be maintained as the decision to cancel them came at a short notice.
Governor Lobong has written to Minister Awut Deng asserting that the reduction of the examination centers would not be possible this year.
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Published Saturday, March 25, 2023
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