Sodomy at Adisadel College: The Facts

Accra, July 22, GNA – The following is the full text of a statement issued by the Board of Governors of Adisadel College (Adisco) on the recent media report of sodomy in the school and made available to the Ghana News Agency.

“Adisadel College (Adisco) has been in both the print and electronic media of late particularly relating to the issue of sodomy on the campus. The Board of Governors of the College confirms with regret that the incident did happen but does also note that the reportage has been with a fair amount of speculation and inaccuracies.

“The Board's and the College's immediate concern has naturally been for the safety of the students and hereby reports the following actions so far taken:

“In consultation with the parents, the two students have been examined at a hospital of their (parents) choice. This happened within three days the incident was reported to the school authorities. Happily no abnormal physical medical situation was detected and the students have since been fully participating in classes and other school activities.

“The report came through the College's counselling system and the Counsellors are continuing to provide assistance to the students in order to ensure their physical and psychological well-being.

“In order to ensure their privacy, the students' identities have been kept under wraps. The Headmaster has briefed both the staff and the whole student body about the unfortunate incident.

“The Counsellors are counselling the students in order to increase awareness about the social and moral implications of sodomy and this will be extended to the staff of the College.

“The incident reached the Headmaster on the 16th of May, 2011. The Committee he constituted to investigate the allegation established that Mr. Richard Arthur-Payne a Mathematics Master, had carnally known two boys.

“The misconduct was admitted by Mr. Arthur-Payne in a subsequent meeting with the Headmaster, who then reported it to the Central Regional Director of Education on 17th May, 2011. Mr. Arthur-Payne was released from the staff of Adisadel College by the Director and he left the campus on the same day.

“Understandably a lot of interest has been generated by how Mr. Arthur-Payne was recruited into Adisadel. The Board reports that he went through the process of application and interview for a position in the Mathematics Department. He was selected because of personal solid achievements which were also reflected in the quality of work during his short stay at the school. While Mr. Arthur-Payne's technical abilities were acknowledged by all and sundry his “other side” does not appear to have come to the attention of and communicated to the school authorities. It must be pointed out; however that Mr. Arthur-Payne got an unblemished release from the Head of the former school he was teaching.

“The Board is aware that the Ghana Police and the Court are handling the criminal aspects of the incident.

“The unfortunate incident in Adisco appeared to have taken the centre stage of national news coverage. However, the broad nature of the discussions in both print and electronic media and the subsequent publications of similar occurrences elsewhere would appear that the incident represents a problem not peculiar to Adisco only in Ghana's educational institutions. It represents a genuine case for interrogation for more regulated approach to addressing the avoidable issue.

“The Board is not unmindful of the shine the media reportage of the sodomy issue has taken off the reputation of one of the most disciplined and prestigious second cycle schools Ghana has produced. It is for this reason that every effort is being made by the Board and many other stakeholders, including the Anglican Church in Ghana, the Ghana Education Service, Old Students and the College's Parent-Teacher Association to ensure that there will be no recurrence of such an incident.

“The Board takes this opportunity to assure the public that Adisadel College will at no time depart from its legendary tradition of discipline and scholarship which have been the bedrock of Adisco's success over a century of its glorious existence.” (End full text)