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ENCROACHMENT HITS O’REILLY SHS - GES Director Has Private Residence within Premises - Squatters, Fulani and Cattle, vie for Space

General News

Like most public property  which public officials have deliberately allowed to go waste for selfish reasons, including the prestigious Achimota SHS, another public facility, O'Reilly Senior High School, has been handed to the dogs.

Like most public property  which public officials have deliberately allowed to go waste for selfish reasons, including the prestigious Achimota SHS, another public facility, O'Reilly Senior High School, has been handed to the dogs.

 

Discreet information reaching the Daily Statesman indicates that agents at the Ghana Education Service and Teshie traditional council elements are culpable in this act of systematic encroachments on land belonging to the state and SHS authorities.

Embarrassingly, the Board of Governors of the school are looking the other way whilst the act of impunity pervades.

The major player in the encroachment saga, according to the Old Students Association, is a Ghana Education Service  Director, Ernest Owusu Ansah, a Project Director for the GES, who has constructed a private residential facility on the premises of the school.

In a release to the media made exclusively available to the Daily Statesman over the weekend, members of the Old Students Association of O'Reilly Senior High School, therefore, called for investigations into the act of impunity, and subsequent sanctioning of all parties involved in the act.

In the release dated February 1, which was signed by its President, Emmanual Yirenkyi, the Association fingered as well the Lands Commission for ultimate blame because they are state agents appointed, not only to lawfully dispose of state lands, but also protect it.

Executives of the Association indicate that, very soon they would be compelled to go to court for a determination, if the relevant authorities failed to act to address what they described as an injustice and criminality.

To add insult to injury, the school is besieged by squatters who have erected illegal structures in the environment, making learning difficult during daytime when classes are in session.

Livestock, including Fulani and their cattle as well as goats straying into the premises are a daily eyesore, owing to the fact that the premises have not been walled.

Aged 90, O’Reilly, now situated in Teshie, Accra, was founded in August 1924, by a Reverend Ezekiel O'Reilly, a Sierra Leonean Missionary/Educationist, at Korle Wokon, Accra, to help raise the standard of literacy in the poor, indigenous community.

 The School was absorbed by the then Government in 1960 and became part of the Ghana Education Service , operating in rented premises at various locations in Accra, notably Tudu, Jamestown, Kokomlemle and Adabraka till date.

 Some decades back, the Government decided to phase out the school, citing financial difficulties, resulting in a front-page banner headlines in the Daily Graphic titled ‘O'Reilly Caput.'

The then authorities of the School, with a few Philanthropists, stood up to save the extinction of the School, resulting in the relocation of the School to its current site, which had been allotted to it by the NUUMO NMASHIE FAMILY of Teshie since the mid 1960s.

The philanthropists included Brigadier-General Joseph Nunoo-Mensah, Late Mary Adu-Gyamfi (then Headmistress of the School), Daniel Amartey Mensah (then LEKMA MCE), Buanya (then Board Chairman) and others who rallied support intervention.

On December 3, 2013, the School started in rented canopies, tables and chairs and a building allocated to it by a former Council of State member, (who himself was an encroacher of the School's land).

 The Brigadier-General initiated the construction of nine-classroom block, amongst other facilities to immediately enhance teaching and learning, whilst the Ghana Education Service  with the assistance of the GET-FUND, started a number of projects, including classroom blocks in the school, but which have been stalled owing, to lack of funds.