The Akwa Ibom State Universal Basic Education Board, (SUBEB) has decried the level of infrastructural vandalism in public primary schools in the state.
SUBEB has therefore tasked communities hosting public schools to own and protect the infrastructure therein, in the interest of the future of their children.
Addressing newsmen in Uyo on Monday,
A board member SUBEB, overseeing Education Directorate for Akwa Ibom North East , Sir John Udoh lamented that various schools visited during an inspection exercise recently undertaken by the board, showed how hoodlums invaded the schools and Vandalized infrastructure from roof to desks.
Udoh specifically pointed out the UBE school at Itam, Uyo, where the Water Cistern, wash hand basins, overhead tank etc were all vandalized.
Udoh wondered why some people would vandalize property in their locality meant to be beneficial to everyone, saying that such act drags government behind.
“There is too much of vandalism in our schools. The public should protect government properties within their domain.
“It is disheartening that government will provide toilet facilities and human beings will destroy it. For instance the primary school in Itam, UBE school. The hoodlums removed the overhead tank they drove a pickup car to the place and removed the overhead tank in a broad day light.
“The question is, who will suffer it? What is wrong with the village, was this thing built in ONNA, they just did it to spite the governor, it was built in Itam. When I went to UBE primary school for inspection, we discovered that they have removed everything, the WCs, the wash hand basins, the seats. This is a recurring thing in so many schools in the state.
“Some places we have gone, human beings will wake up in the night and remove roofs and a school in Obio Imo, some people removed the roofs. Though government has gone ahead to build a perimeter fencing and provided dual carriage desks, at the end of the day they will break into the place that was locked and take the chairs and desks and other items.
“The rate of abuse of government property is alarming. There are some local government areas we visited for inspection, we discovered that they have removed the pumps that supply water to the school.” he said
Udoh who described the act as sabotage to government efforts, said the vandals have left a negative impression on government’s effort to equip schools in the state as their activities have continued to reduce children in the affected schools to the floor.
“People will say government is not providing infrastructure , why are our children sitting on the floor? They forgot that these desks are not made and kept somewhere, I’m talking as a person in charge of school services. It takes a little while for the person constructing the desk to finish.
“I appeal to the public to desist from the act, to the different communities and village heads to assist government to protect these properties for they are their own.” He added.
The board member disclosed that the state government has built over 100 modern classroom blocks with magnetic boards, drilled portable boreholes, constructed perimeter fencing and had given the schools accross the state a facelift, adding that these were possible through counterpart funding with the federal government.
“Many states refused to harness the facility of counterpart funding but Governor Udom Emmanuel does that, that is the funds we are using to do all those things, providing those infrastructure, we are building boreholes in our schools, that is because we want to stop our children from running to the road to get water. The boreholes are treated, many schools we built newly accross the state have magnetic board.” Udoh said