NTARA: Teachers and learners at the Ntara Combined School, situated some 60km west of Rundu, intend to go on strike next Monday to express their dissatisfaction over water shortages at their school.
A water tank that supplies water to the school was damaged at the beginning of August, and is still broken.
This issue was apparently reported to Regional Education Director Alfons Dikuua to have it repaired, but the teaching staff say their request has fallen on “deaf ears”.
The teachers, who preferred anonymity, told Nampa on Tuesday that the lack of water is affecting teaching and learning at the school as both learners and teachers are forced to walk long distances to the Okavango River to fetch water for household chores and other activities.
“The entire teaching staff and learners regard this situation as negligence by our Ministry of Education,” charged the teachers in a letter addressed to Dikuua, and made available to this reporter.
Apart from the shortage of water, the school is also faced with a lack of toilet facilities, resulting in learners and teachers having to relieve themselves in nearby bushes when nature calls.
A pit latrine toilet was built in 2000, and is now full to capacity.
The teachers further stated that numerous letters were written to Dikuua between 2009 and 2010, requesting him to do something to eliminate termites destroying the school buildings, but it was apparently never seen as a crucial issue.
Approached for comment, the Deputy Director for Education in Kunene, Fanuel Kapapero was surprised to hear that teachers and learners at Ntara do not have water, saying he is yet to get the letter that the teachers wrote.
He told this agency that he will, however, make a follow-up on the damaged water tank.
The Ntara Combined School offers Grades One to 10, and has a total of 459 learners and 17 teachers.