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Okyenhene calls for closure of Bright SHS over WASSCE riot

The Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council has waded into student-riots in some Senior High Schools with a call for the immediate closure of Bright Senior High School located at Kukurantumi in the Abuakwa North District of the Eastern Region.

The council in a statement said the call “is provoked by the incident of examination fraud of grave significance in direct relation to the assault of Mr. Gyan Mensah and Damolie Pacome, an official of the West African Examination Council and a reporter or the Daily Graphic respectively in their lawful duties to insist on a fair conduct of WASSCE examination”.

Final year students of Bright SHS allegedly went on rampage on the orders of their proprietor as they protested strict exam supervision on August 6, 2020.

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Bright SHS proprietor, Bright Amponsah

The council in a statement signed by its secretary, D.M Ofori- Atta, and copied to the Ghana Education Service and the Education Ministry,  observed that the school authorities have over the years engaged in “several reports of corrupt and exploitative motives”.

The Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council also accused the proprietor of Bright Senior High School, Bright Amponsah of masterminding the assault on the WAEC officials and journalists who visited the school during the ongoing West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

The State alleged that the “the exam results from the rogue Bright SHS are falsified.
It has become evident that 90% of graduands of the Bright SHS drop out of public universities in their first year due to their lack of ability to meet the intellectual and academic demands of tertiary institutions”.

These enumerated situations, according to the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council has necessitated the need for the immediate closure of the school to prevent a future recurrence.

The two-page letter said the demands were backed by His Majesty Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin.

“On humanitarian grounds and fatherly consideration, the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council will assist in the rehabilitation of affected student. This is in consideration of their immediate and best interest,” the letter read.

It also recommended “a thorough investigation of the operations of Bright SHS over the last decade with particular concern with its dealings with certain officers of the West African Examination Council WAEC.

Background

On August 6, 2020, over 1000 final year students of Bright SHS who were writing their exit exams, WASSCE, went on rampage attacking invigilators and journalists who had visited the school.

A viral video captured the proprietor of the school allegedly ordering his students to stop writing the exams.

They had protested strict exams supervision by the WAEC invigilators.

Assaulted WAEC Invigilator

The students reportedly pounced on the WAEC supervisors wielding knives, sticks, and compasses and beast them till they sustained various degrees of injuries.

The rampaging students also chased and beat a Daily Graphic reporter to a pulp when he visited the school to report on riots which had characterized the day’s paper.

Daily Graphic Reporter, Damalie Emmanuel Pacome.

West Africa Examination Council subsequently moved the examination center from the premises of Bright SHS to the Ofori Panyin SHS following the incident.

The examination council said, it has begun a probe into allegations of exam malpractices and would not hesitate to sanction the students if found culpable.

The Ghana Education Service (GES) also dismissed 14 students from five SHSs for engaging in similar acts of vandalism when they accused supervisors of being firm during the ongoing WASSCE.

GES as part of the sanctions also barred the 14 students from continuing with their final exams.

But President Akufo-Addo has intervened and asked the GES to reconsider its decision to ban the students from writing their final exams.

According to him, the students, just like everyone deserve a second chance at life.

 

 

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