No fewer than 12 secondary school principals in Cross River State have been reportedly sacked over collection of illegal levies.
It was learnt that six others were suspended while 16 were transferred for the misdemeanour.
The Commissioner for Quality Education, Dr Godwin Amanke, who made this known on Tuesday during a ministerial briefing in Calabar, noted that the heads were given queries.
He said, “We have given a lot of queries. Twelve principals were removed, six suspended and 16 were transferred,” for the misdemeanor.
“I heard that principals were paying as much as N300,000 to be transferred.
“Tuition fee in the state is free but some Cross River teachers and principals connived to alarmingly inflate other charges, which is not acceptable at all. We have suspended six principals so far over the unusual and inflated charges on students. We have given several queries to others involved in illegal charges and dealings, including bribing and acceptance of bribes to be posted to township schools.
“These principals collect a hefty sum of N40,000 from each student as against N1,200. They collected fees for three terms upfront, claiming that many students do abandon their schools after taking WAEC exams. We are monitoring defaulting teachers and principals, and won’t hesitate to wield the big stick.”
Amanke further spoke on the achievements of his ministry, especially the completion of the N11.5bn Teachers Training Institute in Biase Local Government Area, adding that dilapidated schools were being rehabilitated across the state.
“If I had my way, I would make education free in the state. I did it as a local government chairman,” he said, adding that 1,000 teachers were being employed for public schools in the state.