Africa Education Watch (Eduwatch) has lashed out at the Ghana Education Service (GES) following the drowning of nine children around Faana in the Weija-Gbawe municipality in Accra.
The nine children drowned on Wednesday, May 10, after a boat they were in capsized.
8 of the bodies were retrieved on Wednesday while the body of the 9th child was retrieved on Thursday, May 11, after a thorough search.
In a statement issued today, Thursday, Eduwatch said if the GES had acted on some recommendations it made earlier in the year, the situation might have been different.
Eduwatch had appealed to GES to provide students who cross rivers to and from school with life jackets to save lives.
“Today’s devastating news about the painful death of nine (9) children who drowned under similar circumstances is very unfortunate and completely avoidable if the GES acted responsibly on our recommendations.”
“It is unacceptable that within a space of four (4) months in only two (2) districts, 17 poor children have lost their lives in their quest to claim their right to basic education.”
Eduwatch further reiterated its call to the GES, Ministry of Education, and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection to develop a roadmap towards immediately providing life jackets for pupils and teachers In Island communities, liaise with the relevant local authorities to strengthen health and safety compliance, and construct schools In island communities. Parliamentary oversight on this matter is very much required.
A similar incident happened at Atigagorrne/Wayokope, on January 25, where 8 pupils drowned.
Read the statement by Eduwatch below: