The headmaster of Ombatini Secondary School in Arua was today detained by his students, caned and marched 15 kilometers from the school to the District Education Office for further discipline.
The headmaster, Jackson Busedich, is accused of mismanaging the school, creating divisions among teachers, corruption and habitual absenteeism that have led to falling standards at Ombatini. Led by the chairperson of the Uganda National Students Association, David Malice, the students handed the headmaster over to the District Education Officer together with the keys to the school administrative block and instructed him not to return.
Presenting a memorandum signed by the Ombatini Secondary School students, David Malice said that none of the students have received report cards for the previous term. He said they did not know their examination results and had no evidence of having studied last year.
Malice claimed that all the problems in the school, from ineffective teaching to falling standards, can be traced to Jackson Busedich's mismanagement.
//Cue in: iWe the students #i
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Busedich denied all the allegations against him. He accused his deputy, Nelson Dribiri, of inciting the students to riot against him.
Busedich said that in his absence his deputy held meetings with the students to instruct them on what charges to make to the District Education Officer. He said Nelson Dribiri has no right to interfere with the affairs at Ombatini because he was transferred to another school years ago, but has refused to leave.
//Cue in: iThey were just incited #i
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Busedich said he was given five strokes of the cane before he pleaded for his students to stop and to present him to the District Education Officer.
The students admitted to beating their headmaster, but said they were forced to do so because he refused to leave the school peacefully.
Bernard Atiku, the Arua Secretary for Education, received the headmaster. He thanked the students for not degenerating to further violence in their protest.
//Cue in: iThank you for #i
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Atiku said a new head teacher was posted to Ombatini Secondary School, but had not take up office because Jackson Busedich refused to leave.
The Arua district inspector of schools Kefa Angualia said the problem in Ombatini has persisted for a while. He asked the students to allow the headmaster to return to the school compound to prepare for handover of office.