The Salama school for the Blind Dormitory reconstruction has delayed because of un finished police investigation over the cause if the fire that ended lives of eleven blind pupils October 2022.
This was revealed by Tumusime Lawrence the deputy head teacher of the school as we visited the the place to asses the turn up of the pupils at the beginning of the first term.
He added that construction of a new hostel, a perimeter wall to protect the students from harm and installation of police post at the school, are some of the things the government promised to do in October 2022 when the girls hostel was erased with fire, but none of these promises have been fulfilled.
Tumusime notes that they have improvised with a night watchman and the teachers are always available during day time as they wait for the government.
The burnt hostel building has never been replaced and pupils are sharing the available hotels at the school, Another staff member who preferred anonymity told us that MTN promised to reconstruct the Dormitory but construction was stopped by Uganda tea corporation limited claiming ownership of part of the land.
Meanwhile, Fire extinguishers, and smoke detectors have already been installed in almost every corner of the school. This has pleased the school management.
Parents of blind children at Salama school of the blind in Kisoga, Mukono district, are also demanding the government to fulfill its pledge. They urged the government to put a police post as it promised such that their children would stay in a safe environment.
“Government told us during a mass for the dead children that it was to going to beef up security and building a perimeter wall, but i have not seen anything” said
Latifa Nanyonga, a parent.
The blind students, Kobusheshe Shirat Maria and Frank Mugisha, who are in primary six, said when the day of returning to school came, they thought about their colleagues who died in the fire.
Another student, Juliet Navvuga, arrived at the school yesterday, Navvuga told us that she was in the state of fear, but she was counseled by her teachers
Some of the teachers, including Lubuulwa Sharif,who taught the seven p.1 students who died in the fire, notes that whenever he steps in primary one to teach his memory turns to the fallen children he starts shedding tears. With all that happened he has got to teach and forget the past.
“Those children were like my own kids. I used to teach them, play with them and have fun with them, so when I enter that classroom I start feeling the pain they went through in the fire,” said Lubulwa.
Meanwhile, Fire extinguishers, and smoke detectors have already been installed in almost every corner of the school. This has pleased the school management and parents.
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