Tanzania: Teacher Who Brutalized Two Pupils In Kyerwa District,Kagera Region, Demoted And Suspended,Onlookers, Mates Under Fire
By Mutayoba Arbogast,Bukoba,Tanzania
The purpose of pre-primary education to prepare children for primary education in Tanzania,may not be easily achieved,if unpleasant environments which cause anxieties to children is not forced out.
Pre-primary pupils fear most seeing corporal punishment at school that cause some of them stopp going to school.
While it may be considered that the headteachers and headmaster are the fore persons to safeguard their students against any kind of violences,including corporal punishment,but it is not.
A video which was recently circulating viral,showing a school headteacher caning a pupil hard and continuously,despite the pupils pleading for mercy,proves the situation in Tanzania.
This shows how children still face violence at school.Administration of corporal punishment at schools is regulated by the Education (Corporal Punishment) Regulations, 2002. Under the Regulations only the head of school,or an appointee by letter, is allowed to administer corporal punishment.
But for this incident which occured at Kakanja Primary school in Kyerwa district,Kagera region,was the headteacher himself who breached the Act,by hitting hard on pupils’legs,instead of hand palms or buttocks to only four light flexible sticks.
Speaking to journalists at his office,Thursday 25 January 2023,Kagera Regional Commissioner,Albert Chalamila,has said the incident took place on 10 January this year,one day after the schools opened,when the head teacher,Isaya Benjamin Emmanuel,thrashed two pupils on their legs,while he was stamping on them in an inappropriate manner,contrary to the regulations.
The names of pupils in class four,both boys who experienced cruelty area Salmon Kakwezi,aged nine and Anord Kweyamba,ten.(hold their names)
Chalamila has said the headteacher has been demoted and suspended for investigation for disciplinary action.
Along with him are four teachers,Godson Rwamwisho,Beatrice Osward, James Josia,and Delfina Leonce,who witnessed the brutal,but kept laughing neither to advise the headteacher to stop nor intervene, are also suspended.
It is said the teacher was emotional,as the two,during holidays,had failed to answer exercises given as homework.
“The law does not allow striking a nursery school pupil. A primary school pupil can undergo corporal punishment but the teacher administering corporal punishment should be mindful of the age of the pupil and his/her health in deciding whether or not the pupil should undergo corporal punishment and the number of strokes to be imposed on the pupil.” read section of regulation.
Excessive physical punishment can lead to children being more aggressive and ant-social and likely to be susceptible to mental illines.
Neurologists and reflexologists,say that beating someone hard around leg palms,may result into loss of sensation and feeling.
Dr Doroth Gwajima,Minister of Community Development, Gender, Women and special Groups,and Prof Adolf Mkenda,Minister of Education,Science and Technology, have shown concern and promised to take stern measures to teachers who fail abide by code of conducts
Parents Anord Vedasto and Kokutangilila Mohamed,have lamented brutality to pupils,saying it discourages pupils from going to school,especially for pre-primary pupils who can’t even tolerate harsh words.