Parents kept pupils at home for fear of violence
March 14, 2018 By Elizabeth A. Kaine
Most schools in Sierra Leone re-opened on Monday, 12th March, after one week break for the elections, but parents kept their children at home for fear of violence.
After the announcement of the first 25% of the presidential result by the National Electoral Commission (NEC) last Saturday, there was violent scene at PZ roundabout in the central business district of Freetown, resulting to injuries and traders losing their goods to alleged thieves.
Even though schools were supposed to re-open this week, parents are too scared to send their children to school because, according to those that spoke to Concord Times, the country is in a state of uncertainty, adding might erupt between rival party members and supporters.
Children failed to turn up for school on Monday and yesterday. Most of primary schools were empty while only few pupils showed up at secondary schools.
A mother of three children, Ann-Maria Cole said: “My children are my first priority and I can’t afford to lose them because I have seen so many violent acts by various people during this electioneering period. I prefer to let them stay at home than going to school.”
Betty Musa, who is a mother of two, stated that the current state of affairs in the country was of great concern to parents, and that she cannot advise other parents to send their children to school.
According to her, most teachers are parents, hence they too watch over their children as the country goes through a crucial moment in its history.
“I am scared of sending my children to school though education is the best any parent can give to their children, but it better to stay at home because prevention is better than cure,” she said.
On his part, Patricia Koroma noted that universities and colleges in the country are not having effective lectures even though they are opened, adding “Why should I allow my primary school pupils to go to school when they cannot even take care or protect themselves?”
“I will only send my children to school after seeing the outcome of the result as 25% has caused lot of panic and threat to the country,” she said.