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Federal Government Sets 18 as Minimum Age for Tertiary Education Admission

President Tinubu orders the suspension of cybersecurity levy
President Tinubu orders the suspension of cybersecurity levy

The Federal Government of Nigeria has mandated that candidates must be at least 18 years old for tertiary education admission in a move aimed at ensuring the maturity and preparedness of students entering tertiary institutions.

The directive was announced by the Minister of Education, Tahir Mamman, during a monitoring exercise of the 2024 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) in Bwari, Federal Capital Territory.

Minister Mamman expressed concern over the pressure exerted by some parents on underage students to gain admission into tertiary institutions, highlighting that such candidates may not fully comprehend the responsibilities and challenges associated with university education.

The decision aligns with the 6-3-3-4 system of education, with the Minister emphasizing the importance of students having a sufficient level of maturity to navigate the transition from a controlled to an uncontrolled environment.

Furthermore, the Minister stressed the significance of skill acquisition for students who may not secure admission into tertiary institutions, stating that the Ministry is implementing initiatives to introduce skills training at the primary school level.

JAMB spokesperson, Fabian Benjamin, reiterated the adherence to the 18-year benchmark, citing its compatibility with the education system structure.

Minister of State for Education, Yusuf Sununu, praised the conduct of the 2024 UTME, particularly commending the introduction of online examinations as a measure to combat malpractices.

He attributed the reduction in examination malpractices to the adoption of Computer Based Test (CBT) format, lauding the Board for maintaining high standards in the examination process.


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