The Ministry of Education has directed the Ghana Education Service to put in place the right measures to ensure that teachers engaging pupils in their farms and other forms of child labour becomes a thing of the past.
The Deputy Minister for Education, Rev. John Ntim Fordjour, who gave the directive was not happy that some teachers who have been tasked to teach pupils rather engage them in other activities contrary to their mandate which usually lead to dire consequences
Rev. Ntim Fordjour gave the directive on Monday when he led a team of the government delegation to commensurate with the families of the nine students who got drowned last Friday while crossing the Oti river after they had been sent to work on the farm of their Headmaster.
Other members of the delegation were the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service, Prof. Kwasi Opoku Amankwa, the Northern Regional Police Commander, COP Timothy Yoosa Bonga, Regional Director of Education, Dr Peter Attafuah and a team of Clinical Physiologist and counsellors among others.
The Deputy Minister said the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the entire Ghanaian populace were saddened by the news of the death of the nine.
He assured the families and the people of Saboba of Government readiness to ensure that the practice of engaging pupils in farms which were very high in the area would be stopped.
Rev. Ntim Fordjour charged people in leadership positions to desist from pleading for teachers caught indulging in such nefarious acts by allowing the laws of the land to deal with them.
The Deputy Minister although the incident led to the death of the nine, the government was ready to support the families of the dead students hence the introduction of the Clinical Physiologist and counsellors who will stay in the community for a couple of weeks to help the pupils, teachers and families of the dead pupils.
He was upbeat that, the right stringent measures would be put in place to curb all forms of abuses against pupils and students at all levels of education in the country.
The Director-General of the Ghana Education Service, Prof. Kwasi Opoku Amankwa, said the GES has since interdicted the Headmaster of the school following the Code of Conduct of the service whiles waiting for the police to continue with its investigation into the case.
To this, he warned all teachers who have the habit of engaging school children in any form of child labour to stop before being caught by the long hands of the laws of the country.
Last Friday, around 3 pm, 32 school children who were returning from the farm of the Headmaster of the St. Charles JHS, at Saboba got drowned when two of the boats carrying the children capsized.
Out of the 31 children, 22 of them were able to swim across the river while the remaining nine got drowned.
This led to the arrest of the Headmaster, Mr Charles Chinji, who has since been remanded into police custody pending further investigation and prosecution.
The Tamale Circuit court yesterday charged the Headmaster for murder and subsequently remanded him into police custody until 29th November 2021.
Rev. John Ntim Fordjour,Dep.Education Minister