New Era (Windhoek)

17 January 2013

Namibia: Teacher-Learner Relationships Condemned

Divundu — The Hambukushu Traditional Authority (HTA) has issued a strong warning to teachers at the Divundu Vision School and other government schools that it will not tolerate any teacher-learner relationships.

Speaking during the opening of the new flagship school, the HTA's Chief Headman Erwin Diescho, who was representing his controversial leader, Fumu Erwin Munika Mbambo, during the proceedings warned teachers to refrain from teacher-learner relationships.

"These are orphans and vulnerable children placed in your care and they should not be afraid of you, therefore no teacher-learner relationships will be tolerated in this school," he warned.

"This is not a place for girlfriends and boyfriends, you came here to learn. Teachers should make sure that the learners understand what they teach and the school should accept and implement ideas presented by teachers," he said.

I want to thank the Under-Secretary (Charles Kabajani) for this great plan to build the school, unfortunately the chief could not make it, because he is reopening his office today and one of our headmen passed away recently.

Diescho's presence was viewed by many as a conciliatory step in the right direction and towards thawing the frosty relations between education authorities and Chief Mbambo, who shunned the official induction at the school over a week ago.

Speaking at the same occasion, Kavango Regional Education Director, Alfons Dikuua, urged Grade 11 learners at the school not to visit liquor outlets, situated near the school, but to concentrate on their studies.

"Especially for the local ones who know where the drinking places are, because the school will not tolerate indiscipline. Whatever decision is taken by the school on discipline will be re-enforced by the regional office," he warned.

Many see the integration of learners who hail from different ethnic and social backgrounds as an effective counter-measure against tribalism in the country, which bodes well for the future.

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