Monday, January 30, 2012

Floods close 71 schools in Namibia

Oswald Shivute in via the Namibian: At least 71 schools have been closed and children sent home after recent rains pushed up water levels in the North. The acting director of education in the Omusati Region, Loide Shatiwa, says 64 Omusati schools, mainly in Okalongo and Anamulenge circuits, were closed because children and teachers cannot cross the deep water in the oshanas.

Initially 70 schools were closed in Omusati, but four have reopened. They are the Eengwena, Sheetekela, Elondo and John Shekudja primary schools.

Ohangwena senior education planner Elifas Nakale says only two schools have so far been closed in that region while his counterpart in Oshana, Paulinus Enkono, says they have closed five schools. In the Ompundja and Uuvudhiya constituencies of Oshana, tents have been pitched at three schools for pupils to stay in.

Enkono says the tent schools - Chief Ankama, Omulunga and Engombe - are in dire need of food. The Oshikoto Region is the only one where flood problems have not occurred at schools. Shatiwa says the education authorities in Omusati have not yet considered tent hostels at schools. They expect the floodwater to subside soon. Shatiwa says they already have plans for weekend classes to make up for the days lost during the closure.

Addressing an Oshana Regional Disaster Risk Management Committee meeting on Wednesday, the region's governor, Klemens Kashuupulw, rallied key players for a coordinated response to problems caused by floods....

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