Candidates waiting to write the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination at the Accra High School centre were hauled out of the examination halls to do litter-picking minutes before the examinations.
The candidates, from about four different schools, were led in the exercise by school authorities and their teachers, as well as examination overseers.
The exercise, according to a concerned parent, Grace Asante who phoned into a radio discussion programme, 'Dwaso Nsem' on Adom FM, was to clean up the school compound because the Director General of the Ghana Education Service was expected there.
Grace Asante said she felt it was an unfortunate development because close to an impending examination, all that the students needed was the peace of mind to concentrate.
Members of the discussion panel were unanimous in their condemnation of the incident.
Gabby Asare Otchere Darko of the New Patriotic Party described it as a strange occurrence, while Madam Ama Benyiwa Doe of the National Democratic Congress said it was a sad reflection of the mentality of people in authority, who would prefer to window-dress problems rather than expose them for real solutions.
Auntie Sarah Aggrey-Smith, a social commentator who was also a panel member recommended that those who supervised the exercise should be held responsible.
She said there is too much disrespect for others' rights in the society and the vulnerable keeps being oppressed. She recommended that if the school was too dirty for the visit of the D-G, the school authorities should have called in the Zoom Lion company to do the cleaning up.
The deputy D-G of the Ghana Education Service, Benedicta Naana Biney, who said she was unable to confirm if the incident occurred or otherwise because she had not been to the school, however said even though it did not violate any law, it amounted to harassment of the students given the closeness to the exams.
She said authorities in charge of schools selected as exam centres were aware of what measures to take to ensure cleanliness of the centres and wondered what could have resulted in the Accra High incident.
Author: Isaac Yeboah