TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, has announced the total abolition of all forms of fees and levies in public primary and secondary schools across the state, in a bid to create access to quality education.
Governor Wike has also directed state-owned primary and secondary schools to stop collecting fees and levies from students and pupils with immediate effect.
He stated that, henceforth, the state government would be sending direct allocations to all primary and secondary school management for their operations.
The governor spoke during a meeting with the heads of primary and secondary schools, Rivers State Senior Secondary Schools Board and State Universal Basic Education Board at the Government House, Port Harcourt.
He said: “From today henceforth, no child, either in primary or secondary schools should pay fees and levies in any school across the state.
“The monies you collect from these children are just used for your personal purposes. If I hear that any school head collects any fees or levies, be they examination, NECO or WAEC fees, that school head would be sanctioned.
“We shall not only dismiss the school head, who collects fees or levies, we will prosecute the person involved.
“Government will work out grants that will be sent to the schools for their regular management and operations,” he stated.
Governor Wike directed the state Ministry of Education, the Rivers State Senior Secondary Schools Board and the State Universal Basic Education Board to monitor all public schools across the state to ensure compliance.
The governor noted that his administration funds the salaries, allowances, examinations and equipment of all public schools. He assured parents that his administration would remain committed to the provision of quality education, which is accessible to the less-privileged.
“I have abolished all fees and levies and it will never happen again in our public primary and secondary schools. Nobody should collect fees and levies from the children of the less-privileged,” he said.
The school heads celebrated the new directive of the state governor.