Child-safety not ensured on buses
The Ogun State Chapter of the Child Protection Network, CPN, has raised an alarm over the nonchalant attitude of private schools owners towards the school buses that convey children to and from school.
The coordinator of the Network, Peju Osoba, made this known in a press statement issued in Abeokuta.
Mrs. Osoba lamented that the conditions of some of the buses were so bad that they should not even be on the road. She also listed several observations made by the network regarding the private school buses to include the fact that some drivers were not specifically trained to care for children and so drove recklessly; some of the buses were manned by only drivers without any other adult to care for the kids on board; the buses were oftentimes overloaded and covered long distances; and some children have had to travel in the boots of these buses.
Mrs. Osoba stated that the network was troubled that even parents did not see anything wrong with the so-called school bus system that endangered the lives of their children. She said that the network saw this as an issue of safeguarding children and called on all bodies concerned including state agencies and parents to take up the issue.
“The network intends to discuss with the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools, NAPPS, to work together on procedures and safety measures for the running of school buses,” the statement said.
The state Commissioner for Education, Segun Odubela, when contacted, told PREMIUM TIMES that government was going to look into the matter.
“As a responsible government, we are going to look into the issue. What is paramount to us is the safety of our children,” Mr. Odubela said.
He added that the state government was going to invite the association of school owners in the state to immediately address the issue.
“Responsible school owners must take safety and welfare of their pupil very seriously; if possible a policy on this will be made,” the commissioner declared.