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29.03.2006 General News

Illegal nurses training school is closed down

By GNA

Sunyani (B/A) March 29 (Anderson) GNA - The Council for Nurses and Midwives on Wednesday ordered the immediate closure of the City College in Sunyani that was illegally training nurses for the past three months. Mr Felix Nyante, the Council's Supervising Authority in charge of Education and Research who issued the order, asked the students to pack bag and baggage and leave the school. He also ordered the proprietor to refund 70 percent of the fees charged the students since he was operating the school without the council's accreditation.

Mr Nyante seized 15 nurses' uniforms and four male coats from the proprietor to prevent the students from posing as nurses. Briefing newsmen Mr Nyante said the Council was informed that someone was illegally operating a private nursing training school in a building in Sunyani meant for residential purposes. A team from the council observed that the building housing the school and the students did not measure up to standard.

A library in the illegal school had empty shelves and was also being used as a classroom, whilst bedrooms had been converted into male and female hostels. The garage of the house, which was also supposed to a computer-centre, did not have a single computer and what was more disturbing was that the proprietor and another male tutor both reside in the same building.

Mr Nyante said with the exception of only one female student who had the requisite entry requirements into a nursing school, the rest did not qualify to pursue the Ghana Registered Nursing programme. The proprietor was running part-time courses in journalism, marketing, banking and accounting, he added. He said the proprietor charged each student 3,600,000 cedis for a year for the three-year course.

The Council Supervisor said a community health student nurse at the Community Health Nurses Training School at Tanoso in Tano North District who was being sponsored by the District Assembly quit the school and enrolled at the City College to pursue the Ghana Registered Nurses Programme. This compelled the Assembly to ask her to refund the sponsorship.

Mr. Charles Mends, the 38 year-old proprietor of City College, said when he decided to establish the school to train nurses he consulted some people who directed him to the Nurses and Mid-wives Council where he was asked to tender in a proposal. He said he wrote the proposal and posted it but he could not tell whether the letter got there, adding he went to the council offices on several occasions but never met Mr. Nyante who was in charge. Mr. Mends, who claimed to be a lecturer in business law at Kumasi Polytechnic, conceded that even though the Council later asked him to put the necessary facilities in place, they did not give him the go ahead. He said he engaged the services of six teachers from the Sunyani and Berekum Nursing Training Colleges but they did not know that he was operating illegally.

Master Ebenezer Oduro Danso, a student of the school, said he saw posters of the school in Sunyani and Kumasi and applied for admission. He said he was shocked by what had happened, adding he would re-sit some of the papers he failed in and ensure that he gained admission into a recognized institution.

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