Anambra School, Where Pupils Are At Exposed To Kidnappers, Robbers, Other Dangerous Criminals [PHOTO]

Children attending school at Owelle-Ukwu Central School Ogbunike are currently at the mercy of kidnappers, armed robbers, lunatics and all manner of hoodlums because the primary school which began operation in 1958 still has no fence to protect it from external aggressions.

Owelle-Ukwu Central School which is isolated in a very lonely bushy area of Umueri village Ogbunike in Oyi local government area of Anambra state has well renovated classrooms and other structures but the environment is currently not conducive for learning and other extra curricular activities due to incessant security threats unleashed on the school by daredevil hoodlums who attack and abscond with valuables from the school.

Although Owelle-Ukwu Central School is said to be the responsibility of the Anambra State Government but the plight of the school as stipulated by the President-General of Ogbunike Progressive Union Comrade Chigozie Ikegulu shows that the primary school has been forlorned, in spite of having a very massive compound spacious enough to accommodate all kinds of recreational activities.

The President-General of the community who raised ordeals of Owelle-Ukwu Central School at a meeting held at Ogbunike town hall at the weekend, said the school is facing dire security threats especially as it concerns incessant attempted kidnappings because children are vulnerable in the school due to absence of perimeter fencing to safeguard the school from such ugly experiences.

The PG said, ” There is a primary school in Ogbunike called Owelle-Ukwu Primary School. That primary school has been undergoing series of robbery attacks, attempted kidnappings, banditry and all manner of devilish acts because the place is an open primary school and it is completely not fenced.

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“We are begging the state government to provide security in that school because we know it is their responsibility to provide seasoned security personnel in their payroll to secure the school for us. There was a time the Head Mistress of the school dropped her bag to open her office door and within a twinkle of an eye, hoodlums made away with her bag containing vital documents. She has also reported series of robbery attacks on the school to us and the primary school is owned by the state government.

So we are appealing to them to please assist us in securing that place because our children are schooling there. There have been attempted kidnappings in the school that made even the teachers to run away. Some of the teachers are afraid to come to teach for fear of being kidnapped while others are working their transfers out of the school even though it is a very lovely primary school.

At the end of the day, we may lose the school because when you don’t have teachers, parents will withdraw their kids from the school. So we are really appealing to the state government to please respond to the situation at Owelle-Ukwu Central School Ogbunike by providing watertight security in that primary school and also fence the school round to protect it from the prying eyes of hoodlums.”

Ikegulu equally advised the state government to look into the payment of stipends to local vigilantes to motivate as well as boost their morale in the onerous task of securing the villages and communities, as he noted that the state government has stopped paying the N10,000 monthly stipends to vigilantes and that virtually all the furniture used by pupils at Owelle-Ukwu Central School Ogbunike have been stolen by bandits.

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Also, the Commander Central Vigilante Ogbunike, Mr. Obika Obi corroborated what the President-General said, noting that he has received several reports of attacks in the school and has equally deployed some of his men to secure the primary school on daily basis. Although he lamented that they have not been paid stipends but maintained that they would not abandon Owelle-Ukwu Central School Ogbunike to its fate.

He therefore appealed to government and public spirited individuals to help fence the school round to end issues of robbery attacks on the school as the Head Mistress of the school has continually complained about heinous crimes unleashed on the primary school by disgruntled elements.

Also another indigene of the community narrated how he saw a mad man in the school compound trying to set the school ablaze. He said he intervened and chased the lunatic out of the school premises with sticks and made it a point of duty to carry out routine visits to the school especially at weekends to prevent lunatics from taking over the school compound.

By Chukwudi Iwuchukwu

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