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Hindu community rescues Nakivubo Blue

Author: Immaculate Wanyenze
Publication: Observer.ug
Date: June 3, 2012
URL: http://www.observer.ug/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=19069:hindu-community-rescues-nakivubo-blue&catid=34:news&Itemid=114

At Nakivubo Blue primary school, everything is broken down.

First, the foul smell of bat droppings that engulfs the school environment is distressing while the heap of rubbish behind the wooden classrooms is disheartening. The toilets are a sight; in most cases, the pupils urinate outside and simply rush to class without washing their hands – there’s no water.

Meanwhile, the neatly painted wooden classrooms give a false impression since inside are broken floors and windows. The asbestos roof that has not been changed since the school’s inception is a health hazard especially when it rains. When I visited the school on a typical Monday morning, scores of pupils were behind a classroom gambling at 9:30am – a time when morning classes are ongoing.

Jonathan Mukinusu, the deputy head teacher here, agrees they face numerous challenges. The World Health Organization, Mukinusu acknowledges, has since condemned the asbestos roof as a cancer threat. When water from the asbestos roof drips on the body, one is likely to develop cancer.

Given the never-ending challenges at the school, the Swaminarayan community (Hindus), under the leadership of its senior priest, Swami Ghanshyamcharan, has pledged to construct two-classroom blocks worth Shs 70m. This was announced at a press briefing last Friday at the school. Many Indians have studied at this school since the early 1970s and the donation is their way of giving back to the school that modelled them.

Ghanshyamcharan also promised more assistance in renovating the old roof, which covers 10 classrooms. Mukinusu, who was appreciative of the Hindu aid, encouraged more donors to rescue the school. “Two years back, the school needed Shs 630m for renovations but now we need a billion to settle the increasing number of pupils,” Kizito Lwanga, a teacher here, said.

wanyenze@observer.ug
 
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