PROPRIETRESS and a Teacher of Arise Nursery and Primary School, Asaba, Delta State, have been arrested by the Police for reportedly flogging a 19-months-old child to death.

The deceased pupil who was identified as Obinna was allegedly given 31 strokes of the cane by the suspect for playing with water and getting wet.

The pupil was said to have fallen into a coma after receiving 31 strokes of the cane from the teacher.

Police Public Relations Officer in the State, DSP Bright Edafe who confirmed the incident, however, said only the teacher was arrested, adding that the matter was being investigated.

Disclosing that the victim died on Saturday, Edafe said the suspect was the school proprietor’s son.

He said: “We have the suspect who is the son of the owner of the school in our custody. He is a teacher in the school.

“But I wonder how a teacher would flog a pupil 31 strokes of the cane. I am only hearing it from the media that it was 31 strokes of the cane.

“The question is was anybody there to count the strokes while the flogging was on?”.

It was alleged in some quarters that the flogging was perpetrated by the school proprietress herself.

Meanwhile,  the Delta State Government has sealed up Arise Nursery and Primary School where the pupil was allegedly flogged to death, (names withheld), adding that the school was operating without approval.

The State Commissioner for Primary Education, Mr Chika Ossai, who spoke while sealing up the school, said the state government would not relent in its efforts in ensuring that all illegal schools across the state are closed down.

The commissioner who spoke through the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr Austin Oghoro, said the school was not registered and not recognised by the Delta state government.

While sympathizing with the family of the deceased,  the Commissioner said the state government would investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of the child.

He disclosed that police has arrested the proprietress of the school and her son who were involved in the alleged crime.

Advocates for Children and Vulnerable People Network alleged that little Obinna’s hands and legs were tied before the flogging started.

Chief Operating Officer of the network, Ebenezer Omejalile who blew it open,  said the suspect and the proprietor were initially arrested but released due to agreement with the victim’s family.

Omejalile said the suspects were re-arrested on Saturday after the baby died.

@ Vanguard Newspaper

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