8 October 2009

Nigeria: Rector Explains Admission Constraints at Maritime Academy

Lagos — For rector, Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron in Akwa Ibom State, Nseyen Ebong, the major constraint of the academy to accommodate the increasing number of applicants seeking admission is the inadequate lecture halls as well as hotel facilities.

This inadequate facilities in the academy, he said, make it impossible for the academy to admit more than 500 of the 6,000 aspiring students seeking admission, adding that the development of more of infrastructure in the institution would help increase the number of students admitted annually into the academy to pursue a career in seafaring.

The rector, who was reacting to criticisms of admission process in the academy, however, disclosed that work is presently ongoing on the expansion of classrooms and accommodation facilities that would enable the institution admit more students.

Debunking allegation of lopsidedness in the admission procedure, which is allegedly done in favour of indigenes of the Niger Delta, Ebong noted that the academy under him has not changed the admission procedure of the institution that he met when he became rector over six years ago.

Speaking further, Ebong explained that at the beginning of every new academic year, the institution places advert in two national newspapers representing the North and South of the country, notifying intending applicants.

Thereafter, an entrance examination is conducted in Lagos, Enugu and Oron in the south and Kaduna, Abuja and Yola for the north.

At the end of the marking, scoring and collation of the entrance examination scripts, the candidates are ranked in order of merit and a cut-off mark (usually 50%) is determined, then all candidates who perform above the cut-off mark are invited for interview.

Ebong explained that the selection criteria after the final ranking are 30 percent of the required number on merit, 50 percent on federal spread or state representation, 10 percent on industrial/ general concession and the remaining 10 percent on catchments area.

While expressing surprise that the institution is being accused of carrying out its admission without federal representation, the MAN boss said that the academy board usually reduces the cut-off mark to between 40 and 30 percent for disadvantage states with fewer representation.

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