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Group Raises Alarm Over Alleged Extortion Of Parents By Management Of Ondo Public School

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As the 2019/2020 academic session is about to commence in Ondo state Primary’s/Secondary School’s, a human rights organization, Awareness Against Social Vices Initiatives, (AASVI), has raised the alarm over alleged illegal and fraudulent extortion of parents of prospective students seeking admission into the public secondary schools in Ondo state. The group, particularly accused the management of Ijapo High School, Ijapo Estate, Akure, of extorting students seeking admission into the government-owned school by compelling parents of prospective students to buy chairs and lockers from the school management before they could be admitted. The organisation, in a complaint letter written to the Commissioner for Education, Pastor Femi Agagu signed by its State Director and Secretary, Mr. David Adeniyi and Ebenezer Agboola respectively and made available to journalists on Tuesday in Akure said the management of the school has gone beyond selling textbooks to students but really engaged in money making ventures. AASVI in Ondo state said, “As it is a matter of public knowledge that government of Ondo state is against public schools principal or staff selling textbooks to the pupils. According to the organization, among the illegal business activities of the school are; “Compelling parents of prospective students to buy and sew the school uniform from the school management. “Demanding and collecting the sum of N2,000 from students seeking change of school to the school and N5,000 from those below the general admission cut-off mark. “In most circumstance, many of the prospective parents were forced or compelled to cough out not less than N50,000 extra outside the government prescribed fees”. Speaking further with journalists, the Director of Operation of the organization, Mr. Akinsola Akintan maintained that the objectives of the group is to bring to the knowledge of the government agencies and other relevant institutions or bodies concerned with issue relating to social vices or perceived unlawful activities in the society. The petition reads further, “It has also become the general and acceptable practice in the state public schools throughout the state with particular reference to Akure that parents will not be allowed to purchase the wards textbooks from the bookshops but at an exorbitant and over-inflated price. “Most of the schools have even made arrangement with some publishers on commission basis thereby making it a condition for admission into the schools. “All these issues are conduct unbecoming of any officer of public secondary school in the state which needed to nip in the bud before it goes out of control”. The organization however asked for the government intervention as a matter of urgency by put in place visitation and investigation panel or committee to verify the complaints and if found to be true and correct to deal out the appropriate punishment to the affected officers as a corrective measure. All efforts to speak with the Commissioner for Education, Mr. Femi Agagu proved abortive as his mobile line were unreachable. But the Commissioner for Education, Mr. Donald Ojogo when contacted did not confirm or refute the allegation as he directed Our Correspondent to the management of the school or Ministry of Education.

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