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Parents lament menace of open drains in Edo State

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Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki. AFP PHOTO / PIUS UTOMI EKPEI

Parents and guardians in Edo State have appealed to Governor Godwin Obaseki to ensure that water channels in the state are properly desilted and covered to save pupils.

The appeal was against the background of avoidable deaths recorded in the state, as pupils were trapped in water channels, particularly through open drains.

Special Adviser to the Governor on Communication and Strategy, Crusoe Osagie, stated that the government had embarked on renovation of not less than 230 public primary schools across the state.

According to the statement, Special Adviser to the Governor on Basic Education and Executive Chairman of Edo State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Dr. Joan Osa-Oviawe, said the renovation was part of Edo State Basic Education Sector Transformation (Edo-BEST) initiative of Obaseki.

A parent, Tony Osaghae, who expressed worry over the safety of pupils during the rainy season, urged government to ensure the safety of pupils to avoid a repeat of sad incidents in the state.

Last year, some pupils were electrocuted and others swept into drains in different parts of the state, while returning from school after a heavy downpour.

Appreciating the government for the renovation work in select schools, Osaghae observed that pupils were no longer safe going to school following the risk of falling into open drains across the state capital.

He cited dangerous spots on Uselu, Ugbowo-Lagos road, Textile Mill road and flood-ravaged Isihor road, among others.

The renovation, according to Osa-Oviawe, is being done to also make learning exciting for children, adding that the renovated playgrounds in the schools provide opportunity for pupils to broaden their scope of learning.

Another parent, Mrs. Igbinoba Osawaru, applauded the government for embarking on the reforms.

She praised Obaseki for insisting on funding public education and ensuring that all was in place for a seamless learning experience for public schools pupils.

As part of the ongoing renovation of public primary schools, the state government ordered 25,000 seats constructed at the Benin Technical College and Edo Production Centre in Benin City for pupils.


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