The Headmistress of the Kperisi Basic School in the Wa Municipality of the Upper West Region, Rosina Die, says her life has been threatened after she allowed the plight of her school to be publicized.
Earlier, unconfirmed reports said the District Assembly had demanded an apology from her.
Harrowing pictures of children lying on the bare floor but showing determination to learn were awash on social media and some news portals last week, not long after President John Mahama boasted about major achievements in the educational sector at his state of the nation address.
The Headmistress was quoted as saying that several efforts to get desks for the children had proven futile. According to her, some authorities of the Municipal Assembly even asked her to instruct the pupils to carry their own stools to school.
Speaking to the media today [Monday] after the Municipal Assembly led by the Upper West Regional Minister, the MCE and heads of the District Education Directorate presented some desks to the school, Madam Die said although she was happy upon receipt of the furniture, she was concerned for her life.
According to her, some youth of the incumbent National Democratic Congress (NDC) have been assaulting her verbally. She also said she has received threatening phone calls and messages, saying she might be forced to seek transfer from the school if her safety cannot be guaranteed.
“I am happy but with challenges; without the furniture the children were suffering but now it will improve a whole lot of things. I have collected the things and I am happy but because of the manner in which the things came, I am feeling sad and happy at the same time because people are talking all over.
There is even a youth group here who are threatening my life and saying I should wait and see; so all that cannot make me happy.”
Bawumia’s wakeup call The Assembly’s intervention comes few days after the Vice Presidential Candidate of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr. Mahamoud Bawumia, ordered 500 desks to be made for them. Dr. Bawumia, who was on a visit to the region visited the school to interact with the kids where he made the promise.
Watering down Bawumia’s intervention? Although the Assembly appears to have hurriedly constructed the desks to save their face, they claim they were being done before Dr. Bawumia gave the pledge.
Citi News’ Latif Mahama said he counted fifty-two desks in classes one and two, but the Assembly claims about 200 desks are being made. According to Latif, there were also a few new desks together with some old ones in class three, but could not confirm whether those ones were also provided by the Assembly.
He said the Headmistress of the school, Madam Rosina Die, who was full of praise upon receiving the furniture, said she was unaware about the exact number of desks provided by the Assembly. She however says what has been provided is enough to solve the problem.
Latif says the pupils showed great excitement, as they sat on the desks after learning on the bare floor with waist pains for nearly a year. Public sector victimization common in Ghana In Ghana, the practice where public sector workers are victimized for merely doing their work by exposing wrongs is common.
This is because in most cases, the government always feel that only positives must be highlighted since the negatives go against them, particularly in an election year such as this.