As a result of the recent fracas between Police and pupils of the Saint Edwards Secondary School, the Chairman of the Parliamentary oversight committee on Youths and Sports, Honorable Nuru-Deen Sankoh Yillah of Constituency 105 has said that he is “ready to work to stop violence in schools”.
The legislator told a consultative meeting of prefects and representatives from various schools at the Presidential Lounge on Wednesday that it is time to stop violence in schools in the country, adding that he is ready and willing to work with Young Leaders in Sierra Leone and other stakeholders to contain the high spate of violence amongst youths in schools.
He stated that, “if we have to change our attitudes and behaviour it must start at school level which is the learning point for everybody before it reaches the homes.”
Sierra Leone, he said can be a better country if pupils nowadays change their attitudes and have respect for those in authority by respecting the laws and abiding by them.
Ambassador for Young Leaders Junior Anthony Navo said “we can change our society from violence to a non-violent country if we put our hands together”.
Navo said that the reason for the meeting was to deliberate the root causes of violence in schools.
The National Coordinator for the Attitudinal Change Campaign Mohamed Bangura urged them to disseminate whatever they have learnt to their colleagues in school.
Director of Police Media and Public Relations, Inspector Ibrahim Samura said that, they are expecting the pupils to have high regard for law enforcing agencies in the country.
He added that if we are talking about change of attitude, it is eminent that people have respect and love for each other.
In order to achieve this, Inspector Samura said that the Sierra Leone Police has established a complaints unit at their headquarters which is open to the public to make complaints about police officers and they have set up an attitudinal change committee too. He appealed to the pupils to let bygones be bygones and called on Police Officers and pupils to change their attitudes.
Responding to this, Solomon S Kanyako the Head Boy of Rokel Secondary school explained that the manner in which Police officers intervene in violent situations aggravates it which will lead to destruction of lives and properties.
He added that they (pupils) have no plans to rebel against Police but the way they handle them (pupils and students) is bad.
Kanyako pointed out that they are ready to change their attitudes if the Police do the same.
At the end of the meeting the various schools formed a committee to address the issue of violence in schools.
By Abibatu Kamara