Worried by the decline in the quality of graduates produced by public schools in Nigeria, the Federal Government has introduced competency test for principals of unity colleges across the country.

Supervising Minister of Education, Mr Nyesom Wike, made this known in Abuja, on Thursday, at a meeting with principals of the 102 Federal Government colleges also called unity schools.

He said the introduction of the compulsory examination for prospective and current principals of the colleges would help ensure only competent ones were made to head the schools.

The minister added that the competency test was part of efforts to strengthen the administration and management of the colleges.

He disclosed that the test would be conducted in the next one or two weeks, adding that the permanent secretary of the ministry, Dr MacJohn Nwaobiala, would work out modalities for the examination.

Wike said the test was not to witch-haunt anyone, but part of ongoing reform process to reposition the colleges, while also ensuring a plain level field for those who were qualified to fill the positions.

“As you aware, some of the colleges have been upgraded to special grades to be headed by Grade Level 17.

How do we appoint those to man them from among those qualified without prejudice?

So you see that the test becomes very necessary,’’ he said.

Wike further stressed that for the schools to maintain standards, those to manage them should demonstrate some levels of managerial skills, as he even assured that the test would ease the pressure of lobbying.

The minister, however, said measures taken by the administration to reposition the education system had started yielding results.

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