EENHANA – The learners of Okanghudi Combined School situated some 50 km from Eenhana will now enjoy the comfort of a new three-roomed classroom block.
The classrooms were constructed by the BH Group as part of the company’s social responsibility programme.
Opening the new premises on Friday, Minister of Education Dr David Namwandi said the block, whose building materials were imported from South Korea, was constructed using the ‘anti-temperature form’ material and is very weather resistant. He urged other businesses especially those operating and trading in the north to follow the example of the BH Group and plough back into their communities.
“The government and the private sector should join hands in Namibian children’s education and we call upon other companies in Namibia to emulate what BH Group has done for Okanghudi Combined School,” Namwandi said
The establishment of the school in 1996 was partially funded by a Norwegian donor, Kaare Rosseland, who donated a science laboratory and a weather station for geography and science lessons. Located in the Ondobe constituency, the school offers Grade 1 to Grade 10 and enrollment has increased to more than 600 learners, some coming from as far as Windhoek, Tsumeb and Oshikango.
“No Namibian child will be taught under a tree and we should also be thankful to President Hifikepunye Pohamba for providing these opportunities hence his call for the private sector to appreciate education,” he said
The minister also took the occasion to announce that some 622 classrooms will be constructed nationwide from January 2014 and the tender process for the construction is now underway.
Ben Hauwanga the executive chairman of the BH Group, who is a strong believer in community service, said the block was not the first project in the north as similar classroom blocks were constructed in Ruacana and Angola.
“As a company we started this project in Angola where we have constructed 480 classrooms and in Namibia, Ruacana has benefited from this project as well. I would like to assure the nation that these ‘anti-temperature forms’ material used to construct the classroom blocks will be used for more than 100 years and this is the same materials being used in South Korea today,” explained the prominent businessman.
According to the school principal, Horeb Rado Dumeni, the school suffered neglect for a long time but since 2011 it has become one of the best performers of the 114 combined schools in Ohangwena Region.
“I would like to thank the government and especially the BH Group of companies for extending their hand to our learners. Our school is now rated among the top six in Ohangwena Region and with a dedicated staff establishment of 19 teachers, we promise you that our learners will continue to shine with good grades,” said the principal
Currently, Okanghudi learners whose villages are far away from the school have resorted to erecting makeshift accommodation using corrugated zinc, close to the school to avoid travelling long distances to and from school. A fence, library and a hostel are some of the pressing needs of the school.
Parents and neighbouring villagers were very grateful and deeply appreciative of the assistance from the private sector especially the BH Group. The opening ceremony was attended by the Director for Education in Ohangwena Region, Sanet Steenkamp, Inspector of Education in Ondobe circuit, Likius Nakamwe, and villagers from the surrounding community.
By Clemence Tashaya