UTME 2022: JAMB rules out ‘mandatory’ COVID-19 vaccination for candidates

As the 2022 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) kicked off on Friday across 750 computer-based test centres in Nigeria, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has said it is no longer mandatory for candidates above 18 years of age to present their vaccination card for the coronavirus pandemic before being allowed into the examination centres.

JAMB had, in December, issued a directive that for anyone above 18 years of age to gain access to any of its facilities nationwide, the presentation of a valid COVID-19 vaccination card was mandatory.

It added that the underage should present evidence of their age and face masks.

A statement issued on December 28 and signed by Mr Benjamin said those mandated to provide vaccination cards were persons covered under the NCDC vaccination policy.

Mr Benjamin said the clarification became necessary because it “discovered that many underage candidates were making frantic efforts to get vaccinated with some even falsifying their age to be vaccinated just to access services at the Board’s facilities.”

The statement had read in part; “All candidates, clients and other members of the public below the age of 18 years are not required to produce any vaccination card before being allowed access to our facilities. This category of persons are not covered by the NCDC vaccination policy.”

The decision followed a spike in COVID-19 infections globally at the time, which was occasioned by the discovery of the Omicron variant of the virus.

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