‘Parents who send children to hawk when they should be in school risk jail term” – Ikpeazu
By Steve Oko
Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State has warned parents not to send their children or wards of school age to hawk or risk jail term.
The Governor who gave the warning during an interaction with the pupils of Australian Academy School who visited him at the Governor’s Lodge Aba said ” it is a criminal offence to send children to hawk when they should be in school.”
Ikpeazu who said that Abia had passed the Child Right Act into law reminded parents that sending of children to hawk amounted to child abuse, and that anyone caught violating the law would be prosecuted.
” If we get a report of any parent who sends his child or maid to hawk when that child should be in school will be sanctioned “, Ikpeazu warned.
Continuing, Ikpeazu said ” it is a crime because you are putting on a hazard way; he could be kidnapped or abused “.
Ikpeazu who gave the ratio of boy to girl child enrolment in the state at 49: 51% said Abia had recorded significant achievements in the education sector as the state has for three consecutive years, maintained the lead in West African Examination Council (WAEC) results.
The Governor extolled the management of Australian Academy for its high quality of education which had distinguished its pupils.
He specifically appreciated the Proprietress of the prestigious school , Mrs Vivian Peters for partnering the state in the retraining of teachers in public school, a programme, he said had brought tremendous transformation in Abia school system.
Later in an interview, Mrs Vivian whose Non Governmental Organisation, Precious Kids Education Empowerment in partnership with the Australian Government had trained thousands of teachers in the state, said her passion for quality and competence was her driving force.
She decried the falling standard of education in the country and said she decided to establish the school in Aba as part of her contribution to put Abia in an enviable position on the global academic map.
The educationist said “Abia now has the best trained teachers in Nigeria” courtesy of the partnership between her NGO with the State Government for the teachers’ retraining scheme.
She also said her NGO recommended the on-going revalitaion of private schools in the state following a discovery that a number of them were operating far below standard.
Some pupils of the school who boldly interacted with the Governor were very uptimistic about the future.
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