May 17, 2022

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Residents Decry Decaying School In Rivers Community

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Edith CHUKU

As the 2022/2023 academic activities commence across the federation, staff and students of the Universal Basic Education, UBE section of the Community Secondary School, Osiakpu, in Ogba-Egbema-Ndoni Local Government Area of Rivers State, have called for the immediate intervention of the governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, to salvage the dilapidated school.

According to them, CSS Osiakpu is the only state government owned school in the community, hence the need for government to respond swiftly and revive the school which is currently in its worst sorry state.

While appealing to government at all levels to come to their rescue by rehabilitating the school from its gory state, they lamented that the current state of the school was a serious threat to the health and life of both the students and the teachers.

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According to them, the UBE section of the school was not fenced, the premises not conducive for students, the buildings dilapidated with no windows, the entire ceilings off and without doors

Other challenges they mentioned was that students and teachers lacked seats, no office for the principal and vice, no tables, teachers sit under trees, and they use the bush for defecation.

A teacher in the school, Mr. Ohia Gentle Goodness, who spoke with TNN in an exclusive interview said “the school is unfenced, the compound is unfenced, the building is dilapidated, though they still have some strong blocks but the windows are open, no window, no almacos, no ceiling, no doors, no toilets, no seats for children to sit down, no seat for teachers to sit, the place is just as you saw, it’s so annoying, so, I had to make that post for the world to see.

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“What they do is, they just sit three, four, five persons manage a seat. Because of the dilapidated situation of the school, we are no longer populated, the place is somehow scanty due to the state of the school but the few we have, they try to manage, we tell them, four to five to one seat but since raining season has not started I don’t know how we are going to do during raining season, so, like I said, I was just newly posted.

“Rainy season will tell if we will use there or I don’t know. The building is just one strong six classroom blocks, and there is a little hall there too, a little hall they made for teachers, for staff room but that place doesn’t contain teachers, no seat, no chairs, no table, some teachers will rather sit outside, we just sit outside or under tree, or on the corridor.”

Ohia noted that the school had no convenience. According to him, “they use the bush to help themselves, we use the bush, and you know Nigerians what thing about Nigerians is that anywhere a Nigerian find himself he is very comfortable, so we are just managing it, health wise it is not okay, what do we do, we must go to work, we must teach, these children must come to school so, and we cannot use our salary, that little salary to fix the place.

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“If the children go to the bush, we just pray, it’s just God because snake can eventually harm any of them, we don’t know what to say. Because it’s only the bush we go, the place is surrounded with bushes, the children, teachers, everybody use the bush. The principal, the vice principal, they don’t have office, all of us sit under the tree.”

“I am calling and begging the Rivers State government, ONELGA Council Chairman, leader of ONELGA Legislative Assembly, Supervisor for Education, ONELGA multinational companies, opinion leaders, stakeholders, philanthropist, individuals to please visit the school, come to our aid and help us, they should see what they can do to help.

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“The school is nothing to write home about, teachers are there to teach but the environment is not conducive for people to stay and learn, we are thinking of how raining season will look like, and the place is isolated, you can see bike from Omoku to the community, you hardly see way out of the community and there is no network, so, I am just appealing, government at all level should come to our aid, please we need help, we need to put the school in order, we need to revive the school, we need to revitalize the school, even if it is just to put windows, put doors and build one toilet that we will use and give us seats, we will be okay.”

TNN, through calls and message made efforts to reach the chairman, state universal basic education board, UBE, but he neither took the calls nor replied the messages as at the time of this publication.

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