2020 WASSCE: Teacher nab over extortion, exam malpractice in Rivers

Prof Kaniye Ebeku, Rivers State Commissioner for Education, questioning a teacher, Emeka Ricky over alleged involvement extortion for exam malpractice in CSS Ogbogoro, Port Harcourt

From Blessing Ibunge, Port Harcourt

A teacher with Community Secondary School, Ogbogoro in Port Harcourt, Rivers State was on Monday, caught in the act extorting monies from students to allegedly aid them in examination malpractice.

It would recalled that the State Commissioner for Education, Professor Kaniye Ebeku, had cautioned schools against participating in examination irregularities.

The Commissioner also warned that any schools, teachers and principals caught involved in malpractice would be sanctioned.

However, while monitoring schools across the state on compliance of Covid-19 guidelines and checking on malpractice reports, one Mr Emeka Ricky, a teacher with CSS Ogbogoro, was apprehended after he was accused by parents and students of obtaining illegal levies.

After interrogation, he was guilty of the offence haven obtained about half a million naira from students. He was handed over by the commissioner to officials of the state senior secondary school board, also present at the school for recovery of monies back to students and subsequent discipline action.

Speaking with newsmen on the development at the school premises, Prof Ebeku said, “We have received alot of information that there is some form of collection, some form of arrangements by some elements in other to engage in malpractice.

“We wont allow that to happen and we are investigating the issue. We will investigate the Ogbogoro incident to the latter because we have zero tolerance to malpractice and corruption.

Professor Ebeku noted that investigation on the incident is still ongoing and assured that culprits will be sanctioned. There are two sides to the Ogbogoro issue we have found so far and we are still investigating

“Firstly, we found a case of illegal collection of charges which has been banned and annulled by the state governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, some years ago. There is no reason why any school principal should be found collecting any form of levies.

“Secondly, there is an allegation and we have an evidence of collection of monies actually designed to perpetrate malpractices and we will not allow this to happen.

“If we find culprits, persons who have taken actions they are not supposed to take, we will allow the law take its course”

Speaking further, Prof Ebeku, expressed satisfaction with the level of compliance to the Covid19 protocols by schools visited.

He said, “classrooms are clean, we found buckets with running waters, we found sanitizers, we found facemasks, all the students are wearing face masks for the examination and we found infrared thermometers”

“All of these are in compliance with the prescribed protocol for the conduct of the supervision”

“I will say in summary that we in this state we are quite happy because there is no incident and everything seems to have fallen in places’.

Some of the schools visited include, Jephthah Comprehensive Secondary School, Ozuoba, Government Girla Secondary School, Rumuokwuta, Port Harcourt, Community Secondary School Ogbogoro, Birabi Memorial Grammar School Bori, Khana and Community Secondary School K-Dere, Gokana.

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