From Awareness Times Newspaper in
In Sierra Leone, To Protest Against School Authority ÖMathora Girls Go ĎBorn- Nakedí
By Momoja Lappia
Jun 15, 2012, 17:06
The boardering section of the Senior Secondary School of Magburaka Secondary Schools for Girls at Mathora in the Tonkolili District of Northern Sierra Leone who last week Thursday May¬† attacked the police station stark naked after destroying¬† million of Leones worth of¬† institutional properties in protest of what they claim was as a result molestations meted out on them by certain members of staffs has in the widest sense¬† been condemned by the Attitudinal and Behavioural Change (ABC) Secretariat as a very uncouth act that does not conform to the real norms of the Sierra Leonean society.
The Secretariat took this disciplinary stance while sensitizing students of that part of the country on the relevance of putting up ethical attitudes and behaviours to the development of Sierra Leone.
Addressing the students of the school, which happens to be one of the oldest learning institutions for girls in the north, the National Coordinator and Second-in- Command of ABC Secretariat, Madam Nanette Thomas fell heavily on them and their administration for embarrassing themselves, their relatives,¬† the district in general and the country in particular.¬† She said it beats her imagination no matter the reason for mature girls to undress their womanhood and display it as sign of registering their displeasure over how their schoolís authority is allegedly treating them.
Madam Thomas emphasized that their misbehavior have not only dented the schoolís reputation, but has brought a curse on the school that needs serious fasting and prayers for it to be cleansed. She reprimanded them to take a retrospect of their deeds and consider how it insults the integrity of young girls who are relied upon to serve as the countryís future leaders. She instructed them to revisit this ugly past and try to work on their negative attitudes and behaviours.
Madam Thomas encouraged the students to take their education seriously since according to her it is the only powerful weapon that will take them to upward mobility in the not too distant future.
While she registered her admiration for the positive behaviours of other schools visited Including the Magburuka Secondary School for Boys (the institution President Ernest Bai Koroma attended and served as Senior Prefect), Pampana High Secondary School and National Commercial Secondary School Madam Thomas called on the Mathora Girls to start emulating good examples.¬† She advised them to avoid blaming poverty for their indiscipline and obvious poor academic performances.
She however partly blamed the school administration for the misbehavior of their students and poor academic performances. According to her the teachers of the school are supposed to be role models for the girls rather than their intimidators and exploiters and later denounced the habit of male teachers sexually abusing them. She maintained that girls have the right to be maintained within the educational mainstream than forcing them into early marriages.
In his address the Executive Director of ABC Secretariat, Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas called on the senior girls that spear headed the demonstration on the basis that the junior girls are more respected than them¬† to understand that with maturity comes responsibilities. He condemned the demonstrators for manhandling their matron and said no reason should warrant them to take the law into their own hands.
This caused Dr. Thomas to call for more efforts to be placed on the affective part of teaching students rather than the cognitive aspect. He later called on the students to develop reading culture than spending more time on extracurricular activities that have no bearing to academia.
Dr. Thomas blamed the ugly strike incident on the behavior of certain school authorities that are seeing themselves as ache rivals. He stressed that the administration should work in the best interest of the students, and not in their own interest. He later advised the teachers and students to work together in the interest of promoting the falling standards of academic performances in Sierra Leone.
Making a statement the Principal of Mathora Junior Secondary School, Mrs. Fatu B. Kamara commended the ABC Secretariat for coming to their rescue as the attitudes and behavior of students have become too appalling to an extent that certain teachers set them against colleagues the perceive as enemies. She assured the Secretariat that they improve on their relationship with the students.
Pastor Ezekiel who gave the vote of thanks on behalf of the Mathora School registered his displeasure over the ugly incident and claimed that with constant sensitization things will improve.
In a related event when the Secretariat called on the Alma Mata of President Koroma students were equally sensitized like their counterparts of other schools.
Commending the visitors the Principal of Magburuka Secondary School for Boys, Mohammed Lamin Sesay called for the continuous sensitization of people.
¬© Copyright 2005, Freetown, Sierra Leone.