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The island school struggling with infrastructure

By Francis Emorut

Added 15th September 2019 07:35 PM

Without latrines, pupils put themselves at a risk of, for instance, being bitten by snakes while out in the bushes.

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The infrastructure at Namakeba Primary School is in a sorry state. (Credit: Francis Emorut)

Without latrines, pupils put themselves at a risk of, for instance, being bitten by snakes while out in the bushes.

EDUCATION

BUVUMA - The physical state of affairs at one school on the island of Buvuma is an eyesore: pupils study under trees and under unhygienic conditions.

The infrastructure is dilapidated, with no useable latrine available for the 593 pupils. The nearby bushes is the inevitable destination for the call of nature.

Inside one of the classrooms, termites have feasted on the text books kept there. Some books are stored in a metallic box.

Apparently, after nightfall, some residents of the area use the cover of darkness to ease themselves in the classrooms of the unfenced Namakeba Primary School.

"Usually in the mornings, as classes begin, you find faeces under the desks. This is terrible because the school does not have any latrines and the smell is horrible," says Godfrey Onyango, the school's deputy headteacher.

Such scenes sometimes demotivate the teachers, he adds.

"I wish Government could come to our rescue and build us better infrastructure and fence the school."


RELATED: Pupils opt to study under trees due to poor infrastructure

 jjj Deputy school headteacher Onyango displays textbooks that have been feasted on by ants. On the left is the Equal Opportunity Commission chairperson Zaminah Malole

 

 jjj The environment inside the classrooms is not ideal for learning

 

Without latrines, pupils put themselves at a risk of, for instance, being bitten by snakes while out in the bushes.

The school has only three mud-and-wattle rooms to show for, one of which is shared by the Primary Six and Seven pupils.

Officials of the Equal Opportunity Commission were shocked by the state of the school during their visit to assess the status of schools and the progress made by the Buvuma local government.

The team decided that the environment at Namakeba is not ideal for learners.

"How can children study in an environment where you find human waste in the classroom?" said Zaminah Malole, the commission's acting chairperson.

She emphasized equality in service delivery across the country, saying there should be no discrimantion in providing resources - regardless of whether a district is hard to reach or not.

The commission plans to make a report and hand it over to Government for a solution. They put to task the district's senior education officer, Raymond Mugunda, with explaining what the district was doing to alleviate the situation.

Mugunda responded by saying they had severally written to the finance and education ministries over the status of the schools in the area, but that they received no feedback.

He, however, assured the commission that the infrastructure of Namakeba Primary School would be improved since the capitation grant has been increased from sh102m to sh300m this financial year.


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