Study

Kauma compares Siguruguru school to a military base

Summary

The councillor of Rundu Urban Constituency, Vicky Kauma, on Tuesday compared the Siguruguru Senior Primary School in the Tumweneni informal settlement of Rundu to a military base during a site visit with the Engage Now Africa delegation, which is the c…

The councillor of Rundu Urban Constituency, Vicky Kauma, on Tuesday compared the Siguruguru Senior Primary School in the Tumweneni informal settlement of Rundu to a military base during a site visit with the Engage Now Africa delegation, which is the constituency’s development partner.

There are 14 green military tents on the primary school premises, which was established by the Tumweneni community members in 2019 as relief for learners who have to travel long distances to and from school on a daily basis.

The school was started under trees and to improve the situation, the community erected corrugated iron structures which were later replaced by tents when Government took ownership in 2020.

“I don’t know how a person can call this place a school as it is no different from a military base. Schools are different from what we are seeing here,” Kauma said.

Because the school was established illegally on land belonging to the Rundu Town Council, Kauma called on the education directorate in the region to finalise discussions on the occupation of the land in case of possible development partners such as Engage Now Africa, who could mobilise resources for proper school infrastructure.

Engage Now Africa is a non-governmental organisation based in Ghana that assists impoverished communities in Africa.

Kauma said she wanted to see changes at the school as Namibian children cannot be educated in such dire conditions.

School principal Annely Masambo said the number of learners at the school increased from 230 to 745 this year from pre-primary to Grade 7. There are 15 teachers.

“The school was supposed to have 23 teachers, meaning we are understaffed with eight teachers. The school does not have heads of departments either,” she said.

There are also not enough desks and chairs, forcing some learners to sit on the ground.

Masambo said during the rainy season classes are disrupted as tents are blown away.

The school lacks cupboards as well to store learners’ and teachers’ lesson material.

Responding to the illegally occupied land the school is built on, Director of Education in the Kavango East Region Fanuel Kapapero said the Rundu Town Council in March this year actually granted permission to the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture to utilise the land for the purpose of school infrastructure, learning and teaching.

“This information will officially be communicated to all stakeholders,” he said.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency