A 10year old Primary five pupil, Fibian Lawal died on the spot while some of her classmates and their teacher sustained injuries after the roof of their classroom at the Local Government Primary School Ajeregun in Ogun state crashed down on them when it started raining heavily on Monday March 9th.
Investigations by Punch revealed that the school building where this unfortunate incident happened was built in 1955 when the school was established. A newly constructed building was by the side of the old school building which was not in use. According to the teachers in the school, they were not making use of the new building even though it was completed in 2014 because it had not been commissioned by the state government.
One of the pupil of the school, Adijat Ohize, while giving an account of what happened said “We had finished school but we were all waiting for lesson when it began to rain. The other teachers left the school and their pupils, but our aunty did not leave. The rain was blowing into the classroom and our aunty said we should all run to a private school beside our school. I ran and got there, but as Fibian stepped out of the class, her shoes got stuck in the mud on the ground.
She started struggling to get out.”she said
Fibian’s younger brother, Okiki also explained what happened “When the teacher asked us to go to the private school because of the rain, I first ran under a mango tree. I saw my sister struggling and I went to help her, but the roof fell on her. My hand was injured. I started shouting her name, but she did not answer me.”.
The mother of the deceased little girl, Mrs Olushola Lawal, said Fabian was the hope of her family as she was a very intelligent girl who was a good writer. She said he had given her and Okiki N1,200 on the day of the incident as the family’s contribution for a new teacher employed by the school.
“It was her younger brother, Okiki, that cried home and said Kemi (Fibian) had died after the roof fell on her. I couldn’t believe it and people kept deceiving me that she was in the hospital.
She was a good writer and could draw anything perfectly. She would just ask you to sit and she would draw you. She had a note for drawing. She always said she would take care of me when she grew older. I wish I had died in her place.”
When contacted and asked why the pupils were not making use of the newly constructed school building, the state Commissioner for Education Science and Technology, John Odubela said there were procedures to be followed before the handing over of such new classrooms.
"The new building was recently completed and there is a procedure to be followed when a building is completed. The contractor will have to file notice, among other things. As we speak now, they have opened the new one for the pupils to use. Government officials from the local government area and the State Universal Basic Education Board have visited the family; they were at the girl’s burial. The head teacher of the school did not inform us on time"he said.
Meanwhile the little girl has since been buried.