UE/R: Sirigu Integrated SHS shut down over student riot

Sirigu Integrated Senior High School has been shut down following an ethnic-related unrest among students on campus.

The riot erupted on 29 May 2023 between a group of Frafra students and a section of Kusasi students.

A Word News investigation reveals that the disturbance started cropped up after a Kusasi student punished a Frafra junior. The action did not sit well with some Frafra students and a heated exchange of words ensued among some students from the two ethnic groups.

The students hurled stones at one another, forcing many students to seek cover inside classrooms and dormitories. Efforts made by the school’s authorities to intervene ended up in vain.

The situation escalated, leading to the arrests of 21 students. Five youths from the community are among the 21 suspects.

A number of students, after the school was closed down, lamented that the untimely closure of the school would affect them greatly as they were taking their end-of-term examinations when the conflict broke out.

Speaking exclusively to Word News, the Chairman of the school’s Parent Teacher Association Sylvester Atule Ayandoo, indicated that the 21 students had been granted bail pending investigation. He also disclosed that a five-member committee had been inaugurated to investigate the development. He said the committee was expected to conclude the investigation and submit its report on 16 June 2023 to the school’s board.

Only the final-year students, according to the chairman, have been asked to report to the school on 9 June 2023 for preparations towards the impending West Africa Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (WASSCE) which is scheduled to start in August 2023.

He said the first and second-year students were taking their end-of-term examinations and had not finished the examinations before the riot erupted. He stated that the students had been properly informed that they would continue with the remaining papers upon the reopening of the school.    

The Upper East Region has witnessed a number of ethnic-related riots in second-cycle institutions in recent years. The schools where such riots happened include Kongo Senior High School, Bolgatanga Technical Institute, Naab Azantilow Senior High/Technical School, Sandema Senior High School, and the most the recent being Zamse Senior High/Technical School.   

By: Gaspard Ayuureneeya

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