By Tony Nyong
The Akwa Ibom State Government has announced the closure of two nursery schools in the Eket Senatorial District of the state following the death of two pupils of Saintly Nursery School, Priscila Victor Okereke and Ada Eso Okereke who fell into an open septic tank at the school and got drowned.
The state Commissioner for Education, Dr. NseAbasi Akpan, made the announcement while undertaking inspection of Saintly Nursery School in Eket, attributing the death of the two pupils to poor facilities as well as negligence and non-challant attitude of the school authorities towards the welfare of the children.
He frowned on the general poor infrastructural level of facilities in most private schools, warning that henceforth the State Ministry of Education would embark on a comprehensive inspection of private nursery and secondary schools to ascertain the quality of infrastructure in such schools and appealed to parents to desist from sending their wards to schools without prescribed facilities.
Akpan, who also announced the withdrawal of authority to operate the school, directed the Divisional Police Officer of Eket, who was in his entourage alongside with the team of education officials, to seal up the school premises, condoling with the parents of the late pupils who were present at the school during the commissionerâ€™s visit.
Meanwhile, two children at Roseland Nursery/Primary School, located at 14 Afaha Ukwa Road, Eket were rescued from drowning recently from a collapsed soak away pit at the school premises.
Narrating the incident, the school Headmistress, Miss Idongesit James Tom,said the two pupils were saved by their timely rescue from the collapsed soak away owing to the noise by other pupils which attracted the staff and other workers in the school.
The commissioner directed the school management to use quality materials in constructingÂ Â Â Â soak away which was undergoing reconstruction at the time of the visit and instructed the Inspectorate Division of the Ministry to revisit the school to ensure compliance.
On a visit to Secondary Commercial School, Ikot Etok Udo where a female JS2 student, Miss Idara Udo Ibanga,was reported dead as a result of receiving three strokes of the cane from a school master , the commissioner warned against inflicting corporal punishment on students.
He admoshiedthe principals and teachers that it was unethical to be involved in the administration of corporal punishment and that offenders will be disciplined.