By EDISON Okereke
As if following the free-feeding strategy of the Federal Government to attract and sustain attention of the primary school pupils in education, the traditional ruler of Diakuma Autonomous Community in Onuimo Local Government Area of Imo State, HRH Eze Elder Amb. Emekauwa Ignatius Anyabuike Jnr (Asoka Anoka 1) has said that he donated a set of a brand new musical instruments to sustain the interest and attention of the pupils of Diakuma Community Primary School and possibly get back the runaway ones who had left the school for others where the drums are being played always for the kids.
The Eze stated this while presenting the entertainment instruments worth over one hundred and five thousand five hundrd (N105,500), including freight to the community. They comprise six big- medium- and small-sized drums and their accessories. The presentation took place on Monday, July 22, 2019, at his Palace.
He said, “Today I’m presenting a set of brand new musical instruments for the school in my community to encourage the pupils and to make our school strong…
“What motivated me is that the community in which I’m the Eze there are a lot of challenges. And if you don’t manage a challenge very well it becomes a problem. So, what motivated me were the primaries 5 and 6. The number of the pupils there is not something to write home about… So some of these quack primary schools around whose teachers are dropouts should not kill our school.
“And if you cast a close look at Diakuma Primary School -that institution has produced masters degree holders since it came on board in 1975. Some of the pupils who passed through the school ought to have completed their PhD’s now. In Onuimo, the school is number three. So it is unfortunate that some parents and wards of the pupils there are being misled. So that is why I bought the musical instruments….”
He noted that during their own time in primary school whenever “we danced to the music drums it used to be exciting… It used to be so sweet. All these attracted particularly me. “If my parents refused my entreaties to attend a particular school then I used to run away, insisting on my choice of school….”
The Eze presented the drums to the Education Secretary of the council, Prince Kennedy Okonkwo who in turn handed them over to the school head teacher, Dorothy Nwike, at the Palace.
Meanwhile, the Education Secretary has described the gesture as the first of its kind in the community and the state.
“I thank the Eze. This gesture to the pupils of Diakuma Primary School is the first of its kind in Imo State, and since the creation of Onuimo Local Government there has never been an Eze that has given out this kind of gift. I so much thank him for his good thoughts.”
Prince Okonkwo insisted that all the public schools in the community have qualified teachers.
According to him, “All the teachers in public schools are qualified. The least among them has the National Certificate in Education (NCE).
“But our parents sometimes pull their children and wards out from the public to private schools. Sometimes they pull them out because of what the Eze has said here. Among the private schools some of them play music drums to entertain themselves, and the children feel like running out to those places.”
The head of Administration, Educational Authority in the Local Government, Mr. Vincent Okpara, corroborated Okonkwo’s statement.
“I’m overwhelmed by this presentation. Honesty, just like the Secretary said this is the first time we’ve seen a thing like this in this part of the world. I’m particularly impressed with Eze Asoka Anoka because of his concern for the school.”
Okpara enjoined other traditional rulers in the area to look into the schools in the local Government to enable them prevent a lot of lapses there.
He also commended the Eze for attracting other school blocks there.
Taking a swipe at the outgone head teacher of the school for not doing well there, the school administrator warned teachers coming to their schools in the area not to run them down.
“To the teachers, it is a big challenge. We know there are issues in Diakuma because of the activities of the outgone headmaster. He didn’t do well. We in the office know. You can’t come from nowhere and kill our schools in Onuimo and go scot-free… It is no more business as usual as far as education in Onuimo is concerned. It is somehow funny that pupils will leave Diakuma for other schools elsewhere. What is the essence? he stated.
Chief Donatus Mahakwe commended the headmistress whom he eulogized that since she came to the school there had been remarkable changes. He described her as a go-gether who is blessed indeed.
He urged her to set up a committee to monitor and administer the musical instruments.
In a related development, the headmistress of Diakuma Primary School, Dorothy Nwike, has called on the State Government to send more teachers for primaries 1 – 6 to the school to boost learning.
While also requesting for a perimeter fence, she in addition, appealed to the Government to renovate the model twin one-storey building at the school to accommodate more pupils.
“Now, the whole nursery Section is in one apartment -nurseries 1, 2, and 3 -due to lack of accommodation. Every Section has its own syllabus or Module to study. Then we have a dearth of teachers for all the classes. At least, two or three more, and to secure our school.”
Headmistress Nwike, on behalf of the school, expressed profound gratitude to the Eze over the gesture, promising to do her best with the help of the teachers to awaken the spirits of the pupils with regard to interest and punctuality.
She said the time to start beating the drums should be early enough so that after listening to it the pupils will start coming, saying that will help to revive the school somehow, assuring that she has a good working relationship with her fellow teachers there.
She thanked the school administrators for answering her call to witness the presentation.
Eze’s brother, Okenze Aloysius Anyabuike commended him for the gift as well as those present to witness the ceremony.
The Parent-Teacher Association chairman, Mr. Basil Uzoechi, whose remark was laden with ahporisms, described the gesture as a thing of joy.
“It is a thing of joy. The Eze has acted according to his position. So, Eze I thank you so much. You’ve done noble. God will repay you,” he said.
While urging the head teacher to keep up her good work in the school, Uzoechi observed that her coming to the school has attracted blessings to the place.
“There is always a good reward for every good job done. What is good for the goose is also good for the gander,” he added.
The Councillor of Ward 5 in Onuimo LGA, Hon. Chief Chukwudi Obiodu (Aboki) who was unavoidably absent, in a telephone chat with Daily Nigerian Horn, commended the Eze over the gesture.
He said the gift was just another of the traditional ruler’s philanthropic act for which he is known.
Obiodu noted that Eze Anoka’s contributions and dynamism towards the development of the community would always be appreciated by the people.
Both teachers and pupils of the school witnessed the ceremony which featured light refreshment from the Eze. The pupils’ excitement over the musical instruments was palpable.