Wednesday, 31 October 2012
Abia govt shuts 100 illegal schools
In its determined effort to improve the standard of education, Abia State government has closed down over 100 illegal nursery, primary and secondary schools across the state.
To show its seriousness over the matter, the government announced that the premises of all the illegal school had been sealed off and that a tribunal would be set up to try the operators of the schools.
Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Monica Philips, who disclosed this to newsmen at a briefing in Umuahia yesterday, said the illegal schools were used to perpetrate examination malpractices in the state.
She said despite previous warnings to illegal private schools and advice that their operators upgrade them, they refused hence the decision to closed them.
Philips did not, however, disclose the exact number of schools affected by the closure, but noted that they were hundreds.
She said officials of the ministry were still going round the state to identify other illegal schools.
The commissioner also said only teachers or examination administrators who undergo training on examination ethics will be allowed to participate in the conduct of examinations in the state.
Philips said only those who participated and passed the examination administration Integrity and technical certificate workshop held recently in the state by the ministry, in conjunction with Exam Ethics Marshal International, would be involved in the conduct of school examinations in the state.
According to her, the measures are part of government’s effort to ensure that the standard of education in Abia remains high.
She said Governor Theodore Orji was in support of the ministry’s effort to ensure that examinations conducted in the state were credible and reliable, adding that the governor wanted the policy of zero tolerance for examination malpractices maintained in the state.
The state government has said there was no going back on on its plans to demolish illegal structures in Aba.
According to the government, no less than 1800 illegal structures will be demolished in the commercial city.
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Ugochukwu Emezue, dismissed insinuations that the government had jettisoned the idea, saying structures marked for demolition were built on drainage channels.
He said the government would want to properly monitor the demolition to ensure unscrupulous elements did not take advantage of the exercise to get at their enemies.
Emezue said Aba was dear to the heart of Governor Orji, explaining that as the reason he wouldn’t abandon the city.
He quoted the governor as desirous of leaving legacies in the state, including Aba, before leaving office in 2015.
He said the government was putting a machinery in motion to move into Aba and begin massive rehabilitation of roads and other people-oriented projects.
On the many awards given to the governor in recent times, Emezue defended them, saying the governor merited them and did not lobby for any.