Ebonyi School for the blind lament govt neglect
By Sunday Agbo, Abakaliki
Blind students of special science school at Opefia in Izzi local government area of Ebonyi state have lamented total neglect by the Ebonyi state government, citing insecurity, poor learning environment, lack of electricity, among others as challenges militating against effective learning in the school.
The students disclosed this during the sixth edition send-forth party organised for outgoing students of the institution.
In an interview with one of the blind students, Okwuegbu Cherechi Joel, who hails from Agbaja in Izzi local government area, he expressed excitement over his successful graduation, but noted that the students lack basic teaching facilities.
Okwuegbu, who said he is interested in becoming a politician in the future, expressed joy over his successful graduation, “I am very excited for graduating successfully. Our teachers are very industrious and they teach us very well.
“One of the major challenges we face is that the school is not fenced. We are always afraid of attack whenever we are in classrooms. We do not also feel comfortable during break time. We are calling on government to fence the school for us so that we can always feel relaxed whenever we are in the school.
“We need well equipped library. Our library is not well equipped and our school is a special school, which supposed to have well equipped library. We don’t also have electricity; we only have power generating sets, which cannot power our computers and other appliances. We need timely assistance in this regard, because, computers are very important to us. We use computers for learning.
“There is what we call ‘talks’ in the computers; and when it is being downloaded in the computer, we can operate the keys through the talk. When we are operating the computers with the keys, we will be listening to the ‘talks’, and they will be telling us the place that we are moving to”, he said.
Earlier, a Catholic nun, Rev. Sister Rose Oguegbe, appealed to the Ebonyi state government to offer free education to blind students of the school.
She observed that enrollment into the school was declining a situation she attributed to the inability of some parents to pay school and feeding fees of their wards, who are visually impaired.
She lamented that state government could not engage those who have graduated from the school and went through the university education.
“The problem here is that some of them, who have graduated, when they get to the state government to seek for job, they will be rejected. Some of them, who have graduated have nothing doing; so, they returned to us and we engaged them. At the end of the month, we pay them N3,000 and after a term, we give them N10,000 as stipend.
“Government should help. Many of them are in their homes, because, they cannot afford the school fees. So, we are begging the state government to offer free education to the blind.” She said.