CAIRO: Allegations that the thanawiya amma, Egypt’s feared (and reviled) national high school certificate exam, was leaked in Minya governorate have triggered a flurry of condemnations, an arrest and overdue government intervention.
State-owned Al-Ahram newspaper reported that police arrested a suspect in this case on Sunday.
Ibrahim Ahmed Abdel Megiud, a student at the Social Services Institute, has confessed to stealing the exams in the past two years.
He also claimed that this year, he acquired them from the daughters of a member of the People’s Assembly. The reason he was never caught before, he said, was because he only gave the exam to relatives and the children of government officials.
This year, however, he wanted to make a bigger profit and so the scandal was publicized.
The police in Minya began interrogating a number of students who bought the exam, the majority of which are children of police officers, according to Al-Ahram.
On their part, the education committee at the People’s Assembly will discuss the scandal this week, according to Sherif Omar, head of the committee. The assembly is scheduled to go on its annual summer recess at the end of this week.
Media reports, testimonies by parents and several officials had claimed that the year one math exam was leaked and sold in the Upper Egyptian province of Minya.
In response to the allegations, Minister of Education Youssry El Gamal made several decisions.
According to a press statement issued by the ministry, a special committee of high-level officials from the Ministry of Education was sent to the Thanawiya Amma Exam Administration in Minya to monitor the distribution of the exams.
In addition, another special committee led by the head of the legal department at the ministry was to be sent to Minya to undertake an investigation and report directly to El Gamal within the next few days.
The ministry also decided that the Minya exams will be graded by a special committee to check for similar answers and indications of cheating. This committee will also report directly to the minister and legal measures will be taken in the case of any wrongdoing.