*students stranded, learn under the trees
By; PAMELA EBOH, Awka
No fewer than 2,000 students returning from Easter break have been left stranded and without a roof over their heads following a windstorm that hit Aguleri area of Anambra East Local Government Area of Anambra State.
Also destroyed from the Saturday windstorm was the camp for displaced people at Father Joseph Memorial High School, habouring more than 10 buildings.Lamenting the ugly situation, the principal of the school, Rev Father Anthony Okoye, said the windstorm destroyed several buildings including refectory, teachers quarters classroom blocks, and hostels, leaving more than two thousand students stranded.He said, ” I have never seen such devastating incident, almost all the buildings in the school were affected. We are really calling on government, National Emergence Management Authority (NEMA), State Emergence Management Authority (SEMA) and Churches to come to our aid. “The students will soon start exams and there is no enough classrooms for them now,” he said.Two students of the school, Chidera Udo and Akachukwhu Atupulazi while lamenting their situation said, “We were in the hostel when the breeze started. It was pushing our doors and started taking the roofs. We were all scared.”An old boy of the school, Mike Meze regretted that they were planning to build a big structure that will include a sick bay in the school before the end of the year.”Look at this now. I call o government to act fast to rescue Justice Chinwuba Memorial Secondary School, Aguleri, which was also affected by the windstorm, students were subjected to studying under the trees.The principal of the school, Emmanuel Anerobi, said, “We are in need now. Look at our classroom block, I told the contractor when he was roofing this structure that he was using substandard materials, now see it, the windstorm has carried it away.”A board member in charge of Post Primary School Service Commission, Otuocha Zone, Joe Enemou and the Zonal Director of the commission in the area, Ogochukwu Obi who were on ground to inspect the level of damage described the incident as colossal .He said that only the federal and state governments can be able to handle the level of devastationsAcvording to him, the windstorm affected private buildings and shops, causing untold hardship to the people who are predominantly farmers.A representative of the Executive Secretary in the state, Chukwudi Onyejekwe regretted that the affected holding camp was the biggest in the state for flood victims.He added, “Even the blocks we use to camp them, everything was destroyed.”Speaking with journalists after a joint assessment of the windstorm damage with SEMA, the Zonal Coordinator of NEMA Enugu, Major Eze said an official report would be sent to the federal government for urgent intervention to the affected victims even as he expressed shock over the level of destruction.