Schools resume in Ayetoro today despite sea surge



DESPITE the sea surge that submerged Happy City College, Ayetoro and threatened to wipe off the entire community in Ilaje Local Council Area of Ondo State, Governor Olusegun Mimiko has declared that the students of the community will resume for academic activities like other hinterlands and urban areas of the state.

This was disclosed at the weekend when the Chairman of Ondo State Oil Producing Area Development Commission (OSOPADEC), Johnson Ogunyemi visited the community to ascertain again the level of destruction caused by the sea incursion that reoccurred on September 1, 2015, which submerged over 20 kilometres of the community and more than six classroom blocks of the school.

The visit, according to him, was a fulfilment of the promise made the penultimate Wednesday when the Commissioner for Environment, Sola Ebiseni, led a team from the ministry, Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) and OSOPADEC to inspect the devastated area.

According to him: “My mission is to come and assess the damage done by the sea incursion to Ayetoro, particularly, to the schools because the school session resumes next week (today).

The Governor has given instruction that we must come and assess the damage and see what we can do immediately to ensure that the students resume back even if it is another one week after the resumption date. “We have gone through the classrooms and assessed them and we know we can do something as soon as possible for them not to lose any term of receiving lectures in their schools.

It is a practical measure taken to ensure that the classrooms are rebuilt.” Ogunyemi disclosed that he had come “specifically on the instruction of the governor to assess the schools and see what could be done,” so that some of the natives, who were contemplating on sending their wards to neighbouring communities or Okitipupa to continue their education would be assured of an uninterrupted academic calendar in the community.

I want to assure you that as from next week (this week), we will commence work because we want to see a situation where within a week the students are back to their classrooms,” the chairman said, affirming that it was a follow-up of all activities lined up after the team last two weeks had submitted their reports to the state government. “This is a natural disaster; we want them to bear with us.

The governor is interested in ensuring that the community is safe, without any problem. It is a natural disaster that requires the intervention of the Federal Government as well.

The state is doing everything possible to see that the school is not affected, to ensure the students get back to the classrooms immediately, he said.”

The commission and the community leaders deliberated on a temporary site for the students and relocated the school to the Government Technical College that was abandoned in the 1980s, commencement work in the community this week.

The head teacher of the school and a community leader, Atimise Johnson, lamented the damage caused by the disaster and disclosed that the community had contemplated a plan for relocation; and since the state government was working in the same direction, they yielded the technical college that was built by communal effort for the temporary use of the school.

But seeing the OSOPADEC chairman here today, who has come to brief us on what the government has in stock for the education of our children and youths, we have agreed to use the technical school temporarily before the renovation of the school by the state government,” he said and appreciated the state government on behalf of the community.

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