Head teacher held over illegal admissions

NGOMA – Police in Ngoma District is holding a head teacher and three other staff members of a local public secondary school for allegedly circumventing student admission procedures.
VICTIMS OF CIRCUMSTANCES; students illegally enrolled at Mutenderi SS heading back home. The Sunday Times / S. Rwembeho.
VICTIMS OF CIRCUMSTANCES; students illegally enrolled at Mutenderi SS heading back home. The Sunday Times / S. Rwembeho.

NGOMA – Police in Ngoma District is holding a head teacher and three other staff members of a local public secondary school for allegedly circumventing student admission procedures.

Bonneur Gapira Maombi, head teacher of Mutenderi Secondary school in Mutenderi. Sector, is accused of admitting 300 students, thus usurping the role of Rwanda Education Board (REB), according to officials.

Reacting to the development, the Minister of State in charge of Primary and Secondary Education, Dr Mathias Harebamungu, accused the school of going against the law and called for thorough investigations into the matter.

The school authorities were later ordered by school inspectors to send the students back to their former schools.

Chaos then ensued at the public school as hundreds of frustrated students packed and marched away in disappointment.

Harebamungu told The New Times that the 2007 law on enrolment and transfer of students bars head teachers from carrying out admissions themselves.

He stated that similar cases had previously surfaced in the neighbouring district of Kayonza.

“Mutenderi’s head teacher went against the law...the motive is yet to be found but all sorts of suspicions can be thought of. It is known to all that only REB enrols students and their transfers are handled by districts,” he said.

“Involving head teachers in student enrolment could encourage such malpractices corruption, favouritism and nepotism”.

The minister warned that the action set a “very bad precedent”.

“He picked students from nine-year basic education programme, something that has a very negative implication. He had no right at all. I think the district will know how to handle this case”.

François Niyotwagira, the Mayor of Ngoma District, said that the head teacher acted on his own.

He said that some students claimed that there was a teacher who collected money from students before they could be registered.

The mayor claimed the action had caused suffering and losses to students and parents.

“The school has no capacity to take on boarding students but he registered 300 students. Imagine such a big number! Time and money were wasted...we suspect corruption which is why we ordered an investigation,” he said.

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