The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board on Sunday released the admission statistics of Nigerian tertiary institutions for the 2018 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, showing that 443,624 candidates out of a total 1,662,762 candidates got admission into universities.
The breakdown also showed that 81,791 candidates made it to polytechnics; 59,498 got admission into colleges of education while 585 opted for Innovation Enterprise Institutions.
The board, which has now closed admission for 2018, said the 443,624 candidates were the spaces filled across the universities.
However, the universities have a total admission capacity of 586,962, which means that the universities still have 143,338 spaces not filled.
The same was for polytechnics, which had a total quota of 134,526 spaces but could only fill 81,791, while the colleges had 391,615 spaces but admitted 59,498 candidates.
Our correspondent obtained these figures from the JAMB weekly bulletin on Sunday.
According to the National Universities Commission, Nigeria has a total of 174 universities – 43 federal universities, 52 state universities, and 79 private universities.
The table by JAMB on Sunday showed that in all, 585,498 candidates got admission into universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and enterprise institutions out of a total 1,662,762 candidates that sat for the 2018 UTME.
Speaking on the admission spaces not utilized, the JAMB Head of Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, told our correspondent in an interview that the admission table showed that universities had the capacity to admit more but could not fill the spaces because the candidates did not meet the requirements.
He said, “We just closed the 2018 admission and we discovered that those spaces or total capacity were not utilized – these were spaces available through which candidates can come in. When do you look at the over one million candidates applying through JAMB, how many of them are even qualified?
“It is just like you say you want to employ 10 medical doctors and you have 1,000 applications. Out of the 1,000 applications, 999 were people who read History, Mathematics and Chemistry. So, that is not a case of no jobs, but not meeting the requirements.”
The JAMB Registrar, Prof Is-haq Oloyede, had confirmed in a briefing held on February 2018 that the 2018 UTME, which started from March 9, 2018, had 1,662,762, candidates, who took the examination in 605 Computer-Based Test Centres across the country.