What you need to know:
- The head teacher of Ariwa Primary School, Mr Benard Oyeku said children who are innocent are suffering the impact of the land conflict between the two districts and urged the responsible officials to amicably resolve the conflict.
Three primary schools located in the land contested by Madi-Okollo and Terego districts are stranded after failing to access the government capitation grant for a year.
According to Terego education officials, the three schools of Odobu, Ocea and Ariwa cannot implement most of their activities because the capitation grant was channelled to Madi-Okollo district accounts.
However, staff of the affected schools are paid by Terego District.
Speaking to the Daily Monitor in an interview on Tuesday, the head teacher of Odobu Primary School, Mr Mackay Anguyo, said: “Right now, we do not have any piece of chalk and we don’t know how we are going to run the third term. The latrines are full and the staff quarters are in a dilapidated state.”
The deputy head teacher of Ocea Primary School, Mr Francis Cadribo, said statutory bodies have since abandoned their responsibilities due to the standoff.
“The School Management Committee and PTA members have abandoned their work because of the conflict between the two districts. Due to challenges of funds, the school did not participate in co-curricular activities such as athletics,” he said.
More than Shs90 million worth of UPE capitation grant is said to be lying idle on the Madi-Okollo District account as the three schools continue to face financial crisis.
The head teacher of Ariwa Primary School, Mr Benard Oyeku said children who are innocent are suffering the impact of the land conflict between the two districts and urged the responsible officials to amicably resolve the conflict.
According to Mr Richard Okot Erema, the Uriama Sub-county chairperson, the border conflict between the two districts, which initially were all counties under Arua District, emerged due to refugee operations in the lower belt of Terego and got amplified when the two entities got district status.
The Terego Chief Administration Officer, Mr Humphrey Otim, said the three schools, according to records, all belong to the district, and their UPE capitation grant got to Madi-Okollo account erroneously.
He said they are making efforts to ensure that the grants are transferred to Terego accounts.
“According to all the records over the years, there have been no issues about them except last financial year. When we realised that, I wrote to the Ministry of Education and Sports to ask why the schools were not receiving their grants as per their database,” he said.
Mr Otim added: “And now the Ministry of Finance has written to us, advising the two of us to enter an MoU with the guidance of the Attorney General on how the money will be transferred to the account of the three schools.”
The Madi- Okollo District education officer, Mr Shem Ovua, when contacted, said: “The person who can give you information about these schools is the CAO because he is the official spokesperson of the district and the three schools are in a conflicted area. So, I reserve my comments for political reasons.”
The Madi-Okollo District chairperson, Mr Ismail Drabe, said the choice is upon the affected schools to cross to Madi- Okollo District or continue to miss out the capitation grants.
“We have nothing much to do now because we had told the head teachers of the three schools to change their order of reporting,” he said.
The Terego District chairperson, Mr Wilfred Saka, said: “We have technical people who are responsible for determining boundaries. Unfortunately some are acting unfairly to alter what has been done.”