The authorities of Odomola Junior Secondary School, Epe, Lagos State have released a video to prove why a 10year-old girl was expelled.
Marvelous Barinaadaa was on Tuesday sent home by her Principal for bringing Peter Obi and Datti Baba-Ahmed presidential election poster to rap note books in the school.
One of the funs of primary and secondary schools is the rapping of notes and textbooks with beautiful papers like Calenders, Newspaper, Posters, Carton papers, etc., especially in government owned schools, otherwise known as the “ajepako school”. This helps the books cover last longer and maintained neat.
Infuriated, the teacher decided the best punishment is to expell the child from the Lagos state Government owned school.
In a recent video obtained by our correspondent and gone viral, the authorities of Odomola Junior Secondary School tries to explain to the world what happened; from the video, one may depict that the problem there is Peter Obi, an Igbo man who contested against a Yoruba man in a 2023 presidential election and more; and not the fun the children were having or the little business involved which may be punishable under school law.
The rise of Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, a Yorùbá man with an Igbo mother have also not made things easy in state as he would be running against incumbent governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
Meanwhile, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has ordered clean investigation into the matter.
The mother of Marvelous Barinaadaa had in a viral broadcast message called for justice.
“This girl is just ten years old, she didn’t know anything about politics, but she was sent away from school without informing the parent because they say we support Peter Obi and Labour Party,” the mother said.
“Please, is this act by the school principal good? See what the school Principal wrote in that letter? And after we say we are one Nigerian,” she said.
But a statement by the President of Odomola Secondary School Old Students Association, OSSOSA, Epe, Apagun Saka Shola, stated that the JSS2 student was sent home for allegedly causing nuisance and distraction through the distribution of posters of Obi in the classroom.
He noted that the move by the principal was to curtail the nuisance being caused by the student in sharing the posters with other students.
He said: “I have been able to reach the principal. The issue circulating is far from the truth.
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“There is a directive to stop all forms of campaign in the classroom. As some political parties use the students to campaign in class.
“The principal did not expel or suspend the student. She sent her home for causing havoc and disturbance in the class during recess by chatting and sharing LP posters to her mates.
“Again, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education is on the issue,” OSSOSA President said.
However, calls and text message sent to the contact purported to be that of the principal were neither acknowledged nor responded to at the time of filling this report.
Also, a statement signed by the Assistant Director of Public Affairs, Lagos State Ministry of Education, Ganiu Lawal, on Thursday, noted that “all its agencies will never instruct any school principal, personnel or teacher to act in such a manner.”
It noted that the Commissioner for Education, Folasade Adefisayo, has reassured that the matter will be dealt with “within the scope of our strict regulations as the reason for sending home the student is unacceptable – if true.”
Also, the Epe Coordinator of Child Protection Network (CPN), Togun Olusegun, confirmed that the organisation is on the issue. He said his organsiation already spoke with the school authorities and would visit the school on Friday for further findings.
According to Mr Olusegun, “the student was not suspended but was asked to leave the school when she was caught selling the election poster for N50 within the school premises.”
Mr Olusegun explained that the principal made the decision to avoid crisis, noting that political activities are not permitted in the school.
Lagos to discipline defaulters
Meanwhile, in the statement by the government, the commissioner hinted that another school principal at Odonguyan who was caught on camera promoting her political choice to the students has been subjected to appropriate disciplinary measures.
Mrs Adefisayo reiterated that the Lagos State Ministry of Education “promotes and runs a public school system devoid of politics and political insinuations”.
“A thorough investigation of the matter will be carried out and anyone found culpable will be subjected to disciplinary measures as laid down in the civil service rules,” she added.