About 2,000 primary school students at the A. Glenn Tubman Elementary and Junior High School in 12th Street, Sinkor are faced with serious water shortage, constraining them to search for place to defecate outside the campus.
The school is one of the public schools under the Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS).The institution has in total 24 restrooms for both male and female students, but lacks access to water.
During a visit on campus on Thursday, 4 April this paper observed pipe supplying water to the restrooms by the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC) had been disconnected since December 1, 2018 due to failure of the Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS) to pay water bill owed the LWSC.
A hand pump that is now the only source of water for the students is not pumping sufficient water to meet demand of the population on campus.
Addressing reporters at his 12th Street office in Sinkor on the water situation, Principal J. NwanakolaPaye confirms the situation but refers reporters to the Central Office of the Monrovia Consolidated School System about five minutes away to inquire further on the matter.
This paper also gathers the institution has 24 classrooms and 37 instructors, who themselves, are finding it difficult if not impossible to use the staff restrooms due to the lack of water to flush commodes in them.
Another challenge faced by the school is constant intrusion of the campus by community residents, including vehicles due to absence of fence to protect the premises, something that has reportedly led to criminals robbing students of their personal effects such as cell-phones and eyepieces at knife point.
A kitchen knife reportedly confiscated from a criminal was displayed by Principal Paye, who expresses serious reservation about attacks on his students by criminals.
Some of the students spoken to complained they were constrained to go outside when pressed by nature because of lack of water, adding that in some instances, students are pressed to an extent they messed themselves up because there is no water to use the restrooms.
However, the Assistant Superintendent of the MCSS, Madam Roseline Sherman, says administration is seriously making effort to address the water situation at the school.
She explains that all relevant information regarding the problem has been communicated to the comptroller and the Special Project Department to negotiate with the Management of the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation to restore water facility at the school. Editing by Jonathan Browne