Member of Parliament (MP) for Sissala West Constituency, Mr Mohammed Adams Sukparu has appealed to government through the Ministry of Education and Ghana Education Trust Fund (GetFund) to help build, and renovate over 30 dilapidated basic school blocks in Sissala West District.
The Sissala West MP also sent an SOS to religious bodies, public and private institutions to come on board to augment the efforts of the MP and the District Assembly to ensure that the children of learn in a serene environment.
Mr Sukparu made the appeal on the floor of Ghana’s Parliament when he read a statement dilapidated state of the basic school buildings in the Sissala West District.
According to him 50% of pupils in basic schools in the Sissala West District study under dilapidated structures.
“Mr. Speaker, there are only 60 basic schools in my district. 30 of these schools have no decent infrastructure. By no decent infrastructure, I mean students in these schools either study under sheds, in buildings with no roofs, cracked walls, and buildings so dilapidated that if nothing urgent is done, we could be faced with a number of fatal incidences on our hands as recorded elsewhere.
You will recall that on 31st December, 2017, a primary school building collapsed in the Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa District in the Central region killing 6 Kindergarten pupils. Similar incidences have occurred in Nkurankan in the Eastern region, and other parts of the country.
I am not a prophet of doom, Mr Speaker, but I dare say we also risk such a calamity if nothing urgent is done in the Sissala West district.” he recounted.
He made another staggering revelation that apart from the physical danger the 30 out of the 60 school buildings poses to children, the 62,958 population of Sissala according to the Sissala West District Assembly, a total of 28,457 are below age 15 representing nearly 50% of his constituents.
“What this means then is that, almost half of the entire population in the district attends basic school without access to decent basic school infrastructure” he opined.
“Mr. Speaker, this problem of deteriorated infrastructure seems to contribute to the unacceptable literacy rate in the district which according to the Sissala West District Assembly has only 16,271 literates out of 40,678 individuals aged 11 and above in the district.
Arguably, the basic school level forms the most significant foundation for the education of every child. Given that many of these dilapidated structures are unsafe for use, many children quit along the line leaving just a few graduates from my district each year.
It comes as no surprise that the performance of students who sit for the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) is unsatisfactory at best, and abysmal at worst; with only 5.3% making it to the tertiary level according to the District Assembly” the Sissala West lawmaker lamente.
Story: Franklin ASARE-DONKOH