The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) has condemned the rampage in some Senior High Schools (SHS) over the enforcement of strict invigilation rules during the ongoing 2020 West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
In a press release Friday, signed by Joyce Afutu, the Commission’s Communication Director, she said the actions of the students are unacceptable, objectionable and intolerable.
“In preparing for an examination, past questions, Chief Examiners’ Report and syllabi are resources to guide candidates. In fact, it is indefensible to argue that the promise and provision of past questions are enough grounds to demonstrate and destroy school properties.
“The Commission maintains that in a democratic dispensation, violence is not an option to resolving or settling scores,” she said.
Students of Tweneboa Kodua SHS, Adawomase SHS, Juaben SHS, Bright SHS, Sekondi College and Ndewura Jakpa Senior High Technical School in the Ashanti, Eastern, Western and Savannah Regions respectively destroyed furniture, smashed bowls containing evening meals in the dining hall, attacking invigilators, journalists, demonstrated and issued threats to school authorities for being firm on invigilation during exams.
These acts the Commission said are condemnable.
“We also condemn the foul language and reckless behaviour of students displayed on social media.
“Freedom of speech does not give any individual the right to use abusive language particularly to the personality of the President of the Republic.
“In this vein, we call all Ghanaians who have the opportunity to speak in the media and public space to be decorous in their utterances and submissions,” the Commission said.
The NCCE urged that as the country approaches the 2020 General Election, Ghanaians and political parties must be moderate in language as they go about their political activities as the stakes in the upcoming elections are very high.
“Consequently, we need a disciplined and measured political climate to undertake a healthy political party campaign that engenders issues-based engagements whilst preserving the sanctity of our democracy.
“We call on political parties not to prey on these misguided youth but to join in our collective condemnation of this distasteful act,” the Commission said.
According to the NCCE, it is aware of government’s effort to provide equal educational opportunities to all citizens in the country, as enshrined in Articles 25 (1) and 38 (1) of the 1992 Constitution.
“The Commission takes serious exception to the reaction of the students who want a relaxation of examination invigilation rules so that they can collude with each other in the examination hall.
“We are equally worried about a related incident where some WASSCE question papers were leaked. These incidents threaten the sustenance of the democratic values of accountability, responsibility, discipline, integrity and honesty, which are gradually being watered down,” it said.
The Commission added, “we cannot build a prosperous society with negative values of dishonesty and indiscipline.”
The NCCE, therefore, appealed to all stakeholders in education, including parents and the government to join hands with it to nurture students, who are the future leaders to offer the required leadership to consolidate the gains made in our democratic journey.