Another SHS Student Dies
…Over Alleged Negligence By School Authorities
By Gifty Arthur
Barely a week after the unfortunate demise of Aburi Girl’s Senior High School (SHS) students, Stacy Okyere, another student, has also met his untimely death due to alleged negligence of duty by school authorities.
The latest incident allegedly occurred at Akim Swedro SHS in the Eastern Region, leaving enraged families of the deceased students putting the blame squarely on school heads.
The deceased’s name was given as Kester Vadje.
Kester, 19, is said to have asked for exeat to go home and seek medical attention but he was allegedly denied by his housemaster.
Stacy Okyere and Kester Vadje, whose deaths have been described as tragic, in their schools were allegedly refused medical care and exeat respectively, after complaining of being unwell.
In the case of Kester, he is reported to have gone to the housemaster to make the request for exeat but he was denied because, according to management, he did not look like someone that was sick.
The student, after several failed attempts, called his father, who quickly stormed the school, picked up the son, and rushed him to the Akimdan Government Hospital.
Unfortunately for him, the facility could not treat him but instead directed that he is sent to another facility.
After arriving at the Akwatia St. Dominic Hospital, Kester died in the evening. The disappointed family says the school cannot absolve itself of blame, indicating if their son had been granted the exeat earlier, he could have sought medical care and perhaps not died.
The family has set February 16, 2024, to bury the deceased.
In the case of the 16-year Stacy on the other hand, The Anchor gathered that the deceased initially requested for medical attention from the school’s nurse, but was allegedly denied with the excuse that she is always feigning sickness.
The students finally managed to place calls to their respective parents, who stormed the schools and were rushed to the hospitals, but it was too late in the two instances.
Father of Stacy, Kingsley Okyere, said he received the distressed call from his Form One daughter and so rushed from Accra to the school and to his dismay, he met her lying on the floor motionless.
“I received a call at 8pm on Sunday 4th February from my daughter’s housemistress. She asked me to come and pick my daughter up to the hospital, because she was sick. I even felt it was too late, but I still decided to go. On my way the woman kept calling almost every two minutes, I was even angry because I expected her to at least send my daughter to the hospital first before calling me.
When I got to the school my daughter was lying on the floor and she was unconscious. Meanwhile, the housemistress was sitting on a chair. My wife started screaming and crying. I was so shocked at what I saw that I became weak all of a sudden,” he told TV3.
He continued, “I used 34 minutes from Ablekuma to Aburi Girls. I was driving at top speed and was even stopped by the police who later understood it was an emergency.”
Mr. Okyere said his checks show his daughter reported ill in the afternoon at 12 p.m. but when he arrived at the school and specifically, at the Edinburgh House, he witnessed a scene that shocked him.
“I carried my daughter from the floor and rushed to the car. My friend drove us to Tetteh Quarshie Memorial hospital at Mampong and while we were in the car, I kept blowing air through my daughter’s mouth to try and keep her alive.
“When we got to Mampong I carried her on my back, and when the doctors saw her, they knew she was already gone. They didn’t even know how to tell me, so they kept sending me around to go and take a card for her and make other arrangements. And when I returned, they finally told me she had died before we even got to the hospital. I was devastated,” he lamented.
Already, the family of the first-year student who was admitted into Aburi Girls just a month ago have threatened to sue the all-girls school, arguing the school needs to account for their role in the death of their loved on in the law court.
According to the deceased auntie, Ms. Diana, the family will go to court if investigation reveals that the school was negligent.
“We’ll sue the school if after investigation it emerges that the school was guilty leading to our daughter’s death. Because, the heads in the school should have ensured the sick girl was taken to the hospital for treatment if the school’s sick bay could not take care of her.
“From Aburi Girls to Mampong Hospital (Tetteh Quarshie Memorial Hospital) is no distance. Nothing stopped the school authorities from taking her to the hospital and subsequently informing her family to come over to visit her. None of these were done, they looked on for the girl to die,” she stated on Accra bsed Kasapa FM.
Stacy died on Sunday, February 4, 2024, following complaints of severe stomach pains.
The deceased student’s body has been deposited at Tetteh Quarshie Memorial Hospital awaiting autopsy, while the police Criminal Investigations Department (CID) have initiated an investigation into the matter.
The Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, has expressed condolences to the school and the family of Stacy.
“I express my deepest condolences to Aburi Girls Senior High School and the family of the student who tragically passed away.
“This loss is truly heartbreaking, and my thoughts are with all those affected by this tragic event,” he posted on X formerly Twitter.