…seeks govt assistance
By Ochuko Akuopha
ONYAH—WORRIED by the deplorable state of the primary and secondary schools in their community, the people of Onyah in Ndokwa East Local Government Area, Delta State, have appealed to the state government and interventionist agencies to come to their aid.
According to the natives, the secondary school structures have degenerated over the years and the surrounding taken over by weeds after it was abandoned by staff and students.
DANGEROUS animals takes over school
Speaking with Niger Delta Voice during the 2016 annual conference of the community, President General, Mr. Michael Ndidi, lamented that the structures now serve as home to reptiles and other dangerous animals.
He said: “the school is now home to reptiles and deadly animals since it was abandoned five years ago.”
According to him, the secondary school is now sharing two blocks of classrooms with the only primary school in the community, part of which he said had gone into River Niger due to serious erosion occasioned by movement of barges owned by an oil company operating in the area.
Students sit on bare floor
Ndidi said: “Both the primary and secondary schools have only four staff, a headmistress and a teacher for the primary school and principal and a teacher for the secondary school.
“Both schools have a total of 11 corps members whose welfare and upkeep is the sole responsibility of the community without any help from the government at any level.
“There are no chairs and tables for learning while students sit on bare floor to receive lectures; erosion has washed part of the school into the river.
“We have written series of letters to the ministry of education, Chief Inspector of Education to no avail. Even the Deputy Speaker who is representing us at the Delta State House of Assembly is aware of the deplorable condition of the school.
“We are appealing to the state government to come to the aid of Onyah people by posting teachers to our school, renovate the abandoned secondary school to enable the students to learn under comfortable environment.”
Also speaking, the Chairman, Parents Teachers Association, PTA, of the schools, Mr Lawyer Chukudeme appealed to all relevant authorities to come to their rescue, saying “Onyah is in Delta state, so the dividends of democracy must not pass us by.
“All that we are seeing in these schools today have been the self-help effort of the community sons and daughters that wants to lay good foundation for the children residing in the area.
“We want the government renovate and post teachers to the schools because without education the future of our children is bleak”.
Lawmaker pledges govt intervention
The Acting Chairman of Ndokwa East Local Government council, Hon. Dickson Okonta declined to speak on the issue but the Deputy Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Friday Osanebi, urged the people of the community to remain calm and patient with the government assuring that their needs would be met.
Osanebi who is the lawmaker representing Ndokwa East constituency, through his Special Assistant on Media, Mr. Agbanashi Obinne, said he had embarked on construction of new block of six classrooms in primary and secondary schools across the various wards in the Local Government Area as part of his constituency projects.