MBALE – The Old students of Mbale School for the deaf under their umbrella ‘Mbale School for the deaf old students association’ have petitioned the speaker of parliament over what they have described as mal administration in the school.
The students in a petition dated 3 November which PML Daily has seen want Speaker of Parliament Ms Rebecca Kadaga to intervene and have the headmistress transferred for the good of the school.
The petition titled to the speaker is titled ‘Sadness in Mbale School of the deaf’ and is signed by Andrew Wekesa, Timothy Okwaput, Fatuma Nankoma, Deo Imalingat, Jamada Gakowa and Max Mulindwa on behalf of the Mbale School for the deaf old students association.
The petition to speaker and copied to the parliamentary committee on Education, parliamentary Committee on Gender, labour and social development, the chairman Board of governors, the Old students are rooting for a transfer of the headmistress.
In the three page petition already received by parliament, the students allege the school has a serious management problem including financial mismanagement that necessitates immediate government intervention.
“Madam speaker, our old boys and girls we left in the school live very miserable life, whenever they are dissatisfied especially when the situation goes out of hand, the head teacher [Sis Rose Nelima] threatens them that she will kneel down and pray for them a bad prayer to make them unsuccessful in their lives,” reads the petition in part.
They add that “Being deaf in the school is a crime even when they want to express dissatisfaction, teachers are intimidated, our brothers and sisters are discouraged so much with education that is why we are seeking your intervention,”
“Madam Speaker, we the deaf people too need education and not punishment and threats, we are Ugandans too, being deaf is not something went bought but it is a condition we found ourselves in,” reads the petition copy of which PML Daily has seen.
The petition points out that although the Education Act 2008 clearly says that one of the representatives on the board shall be an old boy/girl elected from the Old students Association, Sis Nelima went against this and appointed Mr Joseph Mubulwama, 70, who has never been a student of Mbale school for the deaf and is very old to have been a student at the school.
“This is against the Education Act of 2008 and against the interests of the old boys/girls of the school because we never elected him besides he is too old to represent us who have gone through this infant school,” Mr Imalingat said.
The petition says that the school is run on lies while the money is being used to bribe RDCs, DEOs, DISOs, Inspector of schools, district leadership, some ministry officials who visit the school and that the school has lost most of the good teachers who knew how to teach well.
The petition reveals further that although the school has 200 students, there are forged registers by the headmistress that reflect that there are 600 students and that the capitation grant received in the school is merely squandered.
Mr Imalingat says that if the ministry does not transfer Sis Nelima away from the school, she will lead the school into heavy indebtedness and continue defrauding government capitation grants.
The petition says that the head teacher usually invites the strangers in the Board meetings; former Board members of the school and local community members to cheer her up against the right decision of the meeting and deaf students.
The petition further alleges that the head teacher embezzled Shs 310M, Shs 240M and used another Shs 30m for allegedly buying tomatoes for the school in one month and that when the Chairman Board asked the district to audit the school, she refused to be audited.
“In summary, we are writing to your office for a special attention because the these are special issues that are affecting our young brothers and sisters at Mbale School for the deaf and Madam speaker you are on record for defending and protecting the rights of minorities in the country and you are a low maker,” the petition adds in part.
Despite your busy schedule, we are asking you to intervene in Mbale School for the deaf because we have tried many officers in the ministry of Education unsuccessfully,” concludes the petition.
Sis Rose Nelima, the head teacher of Mbale school for the deaf could not be reached for comment nor her deputy as they could not answer their calls.
The Chairman Board of governors Mr Stephen Masika just said he has also received the petition and does not have any comment before switching off his phone.