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General News of Tuesday, 23 March 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

‘I feel depressed and disappointed’ – Embattled Rasta student speaks

Oheneba Kwaku Nkrabea, a Rastafarian would-be first-year Achimota Student who has been denied admission because of his dreadlocks says he feels “depressed and disappointed”.

Speaking to Blakk Rasta on Zylofon FM on Monday 22 March and monitored by GhanaWeb, Oheneba Kwaku Nkrabea, 16, said: “I feel depressed and disappointed. I think they [his parents] must continue and go to court so that this matter will be solved.”

The student who has been offered General Arts indicated that he, at a point, pressed on his parents to shave his dreadlocks in order to enrol at Achimota, his first-choice school, but his parents did not heed his plea.

When the host asked why he wanted his dreadlocks to be shaved off, Oheneba Kwaku Nkrabea explained, “At a point, I lost hope. I really wanted to go to Achimota because I saw Achimota as a good school…”

Background

Authorities of the Achimota School in Accra had on Thursday turned home the dreadlocked students, asking the parents to cut off their hair or find another school for them.

The news has since caught national attention.

But after public outrage, the Ghana Education Service (GES) on Saturday instructed the authorities of Achimota School to admit the two first-year students who reported on campus with dreadlocks.

Professor Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa, Director-General of GES, told the Daily Graphic: “We have asked her [headmistress] to admit the students. The student is a Rastafarian and if there is evidence to show that he is Rastafarian, all that he needs to do is to tie the hair neatly.”

But the GES on Monday, 22 March, backtracked on their earlier directive.

Following the GES directive on March 20, the Service called for a meeting with all the concerned parties and changed its position, this time, siding with the headmistress of Achimota.

Ras Tetteh Wayo, a lawyer and member of the Rastafari Council, told Joy News: “It was the GES that called for the meeting for the two parties, [that is], the parents of the students and the Headmistress of Achimota School…and one of the GES’ deputy directors who chaired the meeting was clear that that was just to quell the media outburst and to bring a bit of calm environment in the country. But the GES will still stand with the Headmistress of Achimota School’s position…...”

Ras Tetteh Wayo further stated that the GES “publication we all saw some few days [ago] was a façade, a fluke”.

“It was just to deceive the citizens of this country to believe that the GES is going to restore peace. So, Ghana should be aware of how the matter has now unfolded and at this meeting, GES supported the position of Achimota headmistress.”

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