…student threatens to kill teacher, family, commit suicide over school fees in Ilorin
By Damilola Alamu
The Kwara State Government, yesterday, announced sanctions for four school principals over alleged embezzlement of funds meant for the Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) and extortion of students in their various schools.
Speaking with our reporter in her office, the Commissioner for Education and Human Capital Development, Hajia Bilikisu Oniyangi said she has directed the Teaching Service Commission to issue queries to the Principals of Government Girls Days Secondary School, Pakata, Waziri Senior Secondary School, Ilorin and Government Girls Day Senior Secondary School, Oko-Erin.
She said, “The Principal of Waziri Senior Secondary School, Alh.Abdulhameed Jimoh Gambari embezzled NECO fees paid by 67 students, which amounts to N636, 500.
“After collection of the money, he converted the fund into personal use refusing to remit it to NECO office for onward registration until the deadline elapsed. He claimed he spent the fund on the wedding ceremony of his child.
“If NECO had not agreed to extend the deadline, we wouldn’t have known, it was at that point that we got to know.”
Speaking further, the Commissioner said, it took the intervention of the state government before NECO could re-open their portal for other candidates to register but to her dismay, Gambari could only account for the fees of 46 out of 67 candidates.
Continuing, she said, “The All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Public Schools (ANCOPS) got to know about the incident and they actually met the principal and told him to refund the money.
“Now ANCOPS has been able to raise funds to pay for the remaining 21 candidates. The association is not condoning such act but as a body they needed to do a rescue mission.
“For now, we have asked that the salary of the principal be stopped, so that he can refund N230,000 balance.
“Given that this is more than what we can condone, we have also decided to report the Principal to the Independent Corrupt Practices and Crimes related offence (ICPC) but that does not stop us from taking our own steps as a Ministry.
Speaking further, Oniyangi said another principal collected money for the SSCE from intending candidates but embezzled the fund and did not register them for the examination.
“We now found out he was trying to use the money to register the students for NECO meaning those students missed WAEC.
“Only yesterday (Tuesday), we discovered that the principal of Government Girls Day Senior Secondary School, Oko-Erin was charging N7,500 instead of the approved N1,500 as PTA levy. We got this information from a parent and we summoned the said principal.
“The issue was brought to our notice after a student decided to take her life, threatened her principal that she was going to kill her class teacher and her children.
“She told the teacher that she had been monitoring her family and the teacher’s movement. After this, the student sent another message to her guardian saying she has come to the end of it all and that she will take her own life too.
“After sitting her down, we asked what were the problems and she said her mother, who works as casual worker at Tuyil Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Ilorin, does not give her money for school fees and what she needs in school.
“When we asked the woman about the allegations, she said, her daughter was annoyed because she could not give her PTA levy. And we asked why can’t she afford just N1,500, she said, ‘no my daughter is demanding that I pay the N7,500 PTA levy once’.”
Similarly, the principal of Govt Girls Day Secondary School, Pakata, Alhaja Abdulkadir Aisha was discovered to be extorting the sum of N500 from each student all in the name of registration for online result print out for internal examination without approval from the state government.