25 Mar 2015 14:20pm
NANKUDU, 25 MAR (NAMPA) - Renovations on the dilapidated Kandjimi Murangi Secondary School in the Kavango West Region are finally underway after many years of neglect.
The school, situated some 120km west of Rundu in the regions Tondoro Constituency, has never received any major renovations since its inception in the 1970s.
The renovations follow a Nampa report that a ceiling fell onto some boys while they were asleep in the hostel on 25 February this year.
Environmental Health inspectors in that region then ordered the immediate closure of the boys hostel.
The report by the inspection team conducted on 02 March 2015 stated that the ceilings of all the living quarters are being attacked by wet rot while all fire extinguishers at the school are not serviced. The wiring of light bulbs is faulty, thus posing a great fire hazard.
Acting Senior Medical Officer at the Nankudu District Hospital, Dr Abiola Adesina proposed in that report that tents be provided to house the learners during the time of renovations, along with temporary or portable toilets.
The report seen by this reporter emphasised that learners are overcrowded inside all the boys and girls dormitories, which makes it hygienically unfit, while the mattresses are not fit for use.
The inspectors also recommended that food handlers or cooks be medically examined and that a cooler system be repaired to store food if need be.
According to the report, only one out of every six toilets at the school is functioning, while showers are not working in most of the poorly ventilated bathrooms.
The living conditions of these students are in a poor state as they are prone to airborne diseases such as tuberculosis and the common cold, and also due to the poor sanitation standards diarrhoea diseases are easily spread. Your good office is thus urged to attend to the conditions with immediate effect in order to sustain good health and safety of the learners and staff members, said Adesina.
The schools principal Alberth Mutesi confirmed to this agency on Tuesday that renovations at the school started some two weeks ago after the Ministry of Education awarded the tender for the renovations of the school.
He said that the regional education directorate provided two tents to accommodate the affected boys, but noted that the contractor had partially fixed the roof to accommodate the hostel learners temporarily.
The principal thus thanked the media for exposing the plight of the school as well as the Kavango West Regional Governor Sirkka Ausiku for her active involvement in ensuring that the school gets urgent renovation.
We really would like to thank our governor for actively getting involved because she went as far as personally calling the Education Ministrys Permanent Secretary to inform him about the school, said Mutesi.
Meanwhile, this agency established that the N.dollars 70,7 million tender was awarded to Kayofa Investment Company, a local company.
The renovations which will be done in three phases and include fixing the schools accommodation facilities, classrooms, and fence.
Work is expected to take about 30 months.
The school runs from Grade Eight to 12, and has 479 learners of which about 350 learners are accommodated in boys and girls hostels.
In January last year, roofing of the girls hostel was blown off by wind; fortunately no injuries were sustained.
Then Education Deputy Minister Sylvia Makgone also visited the school last year and compiled a report about the deplorable conditions at the school.