Mr. Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to make this Statement which is on the need to
construct fence walls around our schools, particularly those in the rural areas.
These days, Mr. Speaker, school lands which have not been secured provide avenues for nuisance to flourish. It encourages incompatible land use and encroachment as well as expose students and tutors to certain risks. Such schools provide easy access to outsiders to enter the school either to steal or have illicit relationships with the female students.
Students in such schools are offered the opportunity to easily sneak to town and engage themselves in nefarious activities such as smoking of Indian hemp, sexual promiscuity, drunkenness and other anti- social activities. Such activities go in no small way to destroy the lives and the future of otherwise brilliant students.
Mr. Speaker, an incident in a school in my constituency merits recounting. Mr. Speaker, on Monday, 6th February, 2006, an aborted foetus was discovered at a place between the girls' dormitory annex and the dining hall. The headmaster of the school suspecting that it might be one of the female students who had committed such a crime, started an in-house investigation.
When the investigation drew a blank, it was decided that pregnancy tests be conducted on all the female students of the school. The Salvation Army Clinic conducted the pregnancy test on 165 senior secondary school (SSS3) girls. The test established that six (6) female students were pregnant. That was quite revealing. Mr. Speaker, judging from the number of unapproved routes leading to the school, it has become extremely difficult, particularly in the night, for the security men to provide adequate security to school property and monitor the movement of
Mr. Speaker, another regrettable incident took place in one of the secondary schools on the Kwahu Ridge. A group of students were returning from the dining hall after lunch and lo and behold a mad man from nowhere started pursuing them. In the ensuing melee, a number of the students sustained bodily wounds. This unfortunate incident would not have happened if the school was fenced. It is said that “a stitch in time saves nine”; we should take preventive measures to save the future of our young boys and girls. We should not by our omissions and failures expose them to the bad side of society.
On this note, Mr. Speaker, may I crave your indulgence to make a few recommendations as a way forward. Firstly, it should be made obligatory that in future any school being built should have fence wall as an essential part of the building plan which must be undertaken at all cost.
Mr. Speaker, it is also recommended that a programme to systematically fence existing schools should be undertaken. In this regard, may I urge the various District Assemblies to champion this crusade by providing funding and support. A vigorous pursuit of these recommendations will lead to a situation in the near future where all our senior secondary schools will be fenced.
When this is achieved, such vices as smoking, drunkenness, sexual pro- miscuity, absenteeism, roaming in town without permission amongst students will be brought to the barest minimum. In their place will appear discipline, high morality, abstinence from smoking and drunkenness, effective monitoring of activities of students, et cetera. The net effect of these virtues is academic excellence and moral discipline.
Mr. Speaker, it is not too late; we need to
start from somewhere and end elsewhere, remembering that with commitment and dedication nothing is impossible.
On this note, Mr. Speaker, I once again thank you for your indulgence.