Last Wednesday, a non-governmental organisation made good its promise to seat 150 pupils of a public primary school, who, right in the middle of Abuja and right behind the office of the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, and his Environment Ministry counterpart, now Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ms. Amina Mohammed, have had to make do sitting on the bare floor to take lessons.
The young children watched and smiled as they knew they will be sitting on chairs and using desks, after a very long wait for government.
Seat-A-Child Network pioneered and led by Mrs. Veronica Obende, donated the benches and chairs while government officials, who came for the donation, looked on.
She told everyday.ng in her Abuja office last Tuesday that an experience with an orphan child led her to get her friends and others to contribute to the provision of 50 desks and chairs. Each desk with attached chairs takes three pupils.
She hopes to spread the gesture to other schools in Abuja and beyond.
“A young orphan boy of school age, Isaac, was in the habit of coming to my estate at odd times during the day. I confronted him once and he told me his pathetic story of how he could not pay his fees and meet his needs in a public school. I had no choice but to rally round for him. The day I visited the school, I left in tears at what I saw in that school in Mabushi. It was in my neighborhood and I didn’t know such a place existed where pupils sit on the floor in an unbelievable environment. That was when I decided on the Seat-A-Child project to ensure our children who cannot afford our level of comfort are taken care of,” Obende stated.