The National Examination Council (NECO) is an examination body in Nigeria that was created in April 1999 by one of the last acts of the Abdulsalami Abubakar military administration.
NECO conducts the Senior Secondary Certificate Examination and the General Certificate in Education in June/July and December/January respectively.
It became the first Federal organization to offer subsidized registration to academic candidates in Nigeria.
NECO was mandated to take over the responsibilities of the National Board of Education Measurement (NBEM) which was created, in 1992, by the Ibrahim Babangida administration.
When NECO was to take exclusive charge of the conduct of the Senior School Certificate Examinations (SSCE) for school based candidates, the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) was to take charge of the same examination for private candidates.
By January 2000, NECO offices had been established in every State and FCT. NBEM operated with six zonal offices located in Bauchi, Ibadan, Katsina, Makurdi, Owerri and Ilorin. NECO created other zonal offices in Akure, Asaba, Damaturu, Enugu, Lagos, Port Harcourt, Sokoto, Uyo, Yola and Kano.
One of the greatest achievement of NECO is that it has provided gainful employment for over a thousand Nigerians and given hope to thousands more – candidates who had been able to keep their matriculation dates because of the timely release of their results by NECO.
NECO is headed by a Registrar, Promise Okpala, appointed by President Goodluck Jonathan. It has six departments, each headed by a director. Each Department has divisions, composed of units. A team of directors and a registrar are the governing body, which is headed by Chairman Dr. Paddy Njoku.
Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (internal and external): Nigeria offers six years of basic education, three years of junior secondary education, three years of senior secondary education, and four years of tertiary education. Mathematics and English language are compulsory.
Junior Secondary Certificate Examination (JSCE) - intended for candidates in the 3rd year of their junior secondary education in Federal Unity College and other Federal secondary schools. Private secondary schools also take part in JSCE. In state secondary schools, JSCE examinations are conducted by the state government.
National Common Entrance Examination (NCEE) is administered to pupils in their 6th year of basic education for admission into Federal Unity Colleges. Two examinations are held annually.
On 15 July 2013, some plans where made by the federal government of Nigeria to remove the National Examination Council (NECO) from the Nigeria Education System due to low and average passing percentage from candidates across the state in Nigeria.
NECO’s official website is http://www.neconigeria.org/