General News of Thursday, 13 September 2012
The attention of the Shama District Directorate of Education has been drawn to a publication carried on the myjoyoline.com page on 11th of September, 2012 and wish to respond to some of the inaccuracies as follows:
First of all, the Directorate has not transferred 14 teachers from the school as carried in the story. In fact, there were 10 teachers and a head teacher at post as at the end of last academic year and so we couldn’t have transferred 14 teachers.
Again, the Directorate is not aware of any sex scandal involving two teachers of the school for which reason the said teachers were transferred.
The fact of the case remains that on the evening of the 22nd March, 2012, the attention of the Directorate was drawn to an alleged defilement case at Komfueku D/A JHS involving a newly recruited pupil teacher and a JHS 3 student. Immediately, the Directorate dispatched a team of officers to investigate the truth or falsity of the allegation. The findings of the officers confirmed the allegation.
Consequently, the said teacher, Mr Abubakar Mazu, was invited to the office for his side of the story. He, in a written statement, agreed having been involved in the act. The Directorate had no other choice than to strictly apply the GES regulation to withdraw his appointment.
Following this, the Assembly member for the area, Percy Ahinakwah wrote to the Directorate accusing the head teacher of being involved in amorous relationship with some of the student girls and therefore requested that the head teacher be transferred. Our investigation did not confirm this so we asked the Assembly member to help by identifying only one of the numerous girls he claimed he has evidence of.
He could, however not mention even one girl on which we could stand to take disciplinary action against the head teacher. He rather threatened that if the head teacher was not transferred, we should not blame him if anything happens to him (the head teacher).
Ever since, the Directorate has had reports of threats by the Assembly member for the area on radio and at other stakeholders meetings that he will “deal drastically” with any teacher who misconducts him/herself in the school. The teachers, for the fear of their lives, officially wrote to the Directorate that immediate action be taken to ensure their safety. That was the premise on which the transfers were done.
The Directorate further wrote to invite the Assembly member in an effort to resolve any outstanding issues. He (the Assembly member), however, failed to respond to the call. Management then invited all the teachers of the school for a discussion on the way forward. Some of them asked that they should be transferred since they were not very sure what action the said Assembly member will be taking next.
Upon further deliberation by the management, the Directorate thought it expedient to transfer all the teachers and bring new teachers to the school so as to bring a high level of sanity in the school and the community for effective teaching and learning.
It must be placed on record that adequate measures were put in place for new teachers to be posted to the school and as of now, the school has a full compliment of staff for teaching and learning to go on effectively.
In all of these, it must be established that the integrity of the District Director in such matters cannot be questioned, and she will be the last person to be seen or even thought of to be conniving with wrong doings of any sort.
The Director, has at all times, operated an open-door policy, hence, was surprised that your story indicated the “blatant refusal of the Education Director to grant audience to him [assembly member] and other opinion leaders of the community”. If this had been the case, the Director wouldn’t have written to invite the assembly member for the area for a discussion (an invitation he never honored, anyway).
On the 6th of September, 2012 the Assembly member and some elders of the Komfueku community were scheduled to meet with the Director. Just before the Director could meet them, she (the Director) was informed, through an officer that the assembly member said he was called at the District court for an emergency duty.
The elders accordingly informed the Director that they will come the following day since she (the Director) was also on her way to monitor academic activities in the schools (they have since not come back ).
Your media house must be guided by the principle of truth as stipulated in Article 1 of the GJA code of conduct in all their reportage. A journalist who is balanced, fair and objective is that who contributes to the development of the society that is why we take serious exception to your story because the opinion of the Education Directorate was not sought before your publication.
We wish to assure all who have education at heart in the Shama District that the Directorate is very much on top of all its duties and this is evident in the year by year improvement in the performance at the BECE.
The elders, students and other stakeholders in the Komfueku electoral area should rest assured that the Directorate will play its administrative role in lifting up education in their community and all other areas under its jurisdiction.