General News of Wednesday, 4 October 2017
The township of Agona Kwanyako, in the Agona East District of the Central region was thrown into a state of mourning, following the drowning of three second-year students of Agona Kwanyako Anglican Junior High School (JHS).
The deceased are Matilda Amatayo, 16; Hannah Mensah, 18; and Rahael Awudzie, 17.
According to the bereaved parents and the Headteacher of the School, Nii Okain, his teachers asked the students, including the girls to bring bamboos to school on Monday.
The bamboos were to be used to make leisure seats at the school.
The bodies have not been found by over 20 divers made up of members of the Asafo Company of Agona Kwanyako and others since last Saturday when the news broke.
District Chief Executive (DCE) of Agona East, Dennis Armah-Frempong, and his delegation had earlier visited the Chiefs, Asafo Companies, bereaved families and teachers of Anglican JHS to discuss ways and means to recover the bodies from the river.
The DCE and his team on Sunday morning again joined the search party, chiefs, the bereaved families, some residents and teachers to search for the bodies of the three girls.
Nana Adeiso, Nifahene of Agona Kwanyako told the DCE and his delegation that five girls and a boy on Saturday, went to the river banks to cut the bamboos, but two girls and the boy escaped unhurt.
Kwame Mensah, the father of Hannah Mensah, one of the deceased, said he told his daughter not to go and cut the bamboo but rather wash his clothes for him, but the girl ignored his instruction.
Comfort Assani, the mother of Amatayo, deceased, said she instructed her daughter not to go to the banks of River Ayensu to cut the bamboo, but the girl indicated that she would be punished on Monday by the teachers.
Mrs. Assani said she told her daughter that on Monday she herself will accompany her to school to plead with the teachers and explain why she did not bring the bamboo to school, but her daughter refused to heed the advice.
The parents have appealed to the Ministry of Education and the Director- General of the Ghana Education Service to intervene to stop teachers and especially head of basic schools from forcing school children to bring bamboos, stones, fire woods, brooms and others to curb disasters.
The bodies have still not been found.