By Tochi Onyeubi
The National Association of Proprietors of Private schools, Imo state chapter Chairman, Chief Theo Mbakwe has debunked the rumour making rounds on the insistence of the state’s Commissioner for Education, Prof. BTO Ikegwuoha to continue the imposition of Thirty Thousand Naira, for fumigation of private schools.
He reacted to the article by Mr Ogu Ogubundu Nwadike, calling it baseless and warned that issues concerning NAPPS Imo and their parent body Ministry of Education, should not be politicized.
The chairman maintained that he should have been contacted to know the true position of events before spreading damaging falsehood.
To set the record straight on the #30,000 scandal, Chief Mbakwe said he was aware of the arrangement, which was Five Thousand Naira certification and Twenty- five Thousand Naira for the main fumigation.
This recent arrangement, according to him obviously did not go down well with proprietors of schools.
He revealed that before now, the fumigation exercise had already been an ongoing process organized by the Environment and Transformation Commission, ENTRACO consultants Gerald Onyekachi & Sons Enterprise and Defence Homes, for the fumigation of private schools.
Upon the completion of each exercise, a certificate was usually issued them by ENTRACO and their consultants at Five Thousand Naira.
He maintained that, the commissioner’s intervention was strictly on his administrative role of supervision to ensure that all private schools were compulsorily fumigated, in preparation for the West African Senior Secondary Certificate, WASSCE, as stipulated by the national and state guidelines for the prevention of COVID-19.
Chief Mbakwe stated that, he was aware of the fumigation fee of Twenty- Five Thousand Naira and certification fee of Five Thousand Naira, as against the initial payment of Five Thousand Naira paid by private school owners to ENTRACO, but the planned exercise was suspended when it raised serious dust.
He pointed out that the dissatisfaction among some members of the association was in line with the argument that the government would have carried out the exercise for private schools as they did for public schools especially during this period of economic hardship occasioned by the COVID- 19 pandemic.
Chief Mbakwe however, advised the originator of the post to always learn to verify properly before publishing, as he is readily available to address anything relating to NAPPS.