Nine children have been confirmed dead after a boat transporting them to school on Wednesday, May 10 capsized.
They were between the ages of 8 and 15, our correspondent Joseph Armstrong reported on Thursday.
The African Education Watch, has since blamed the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service (GES) for the drowning of nine children at Faanaa, an island community in the Greater Accra Region.
The education think tank, says the unfortunate incident could have been avoided had the two institutions acted properly by providing life jackets to the pupils based on previous incidents.
The school children, were said to be travelling from Faana to Kelee in the Ga South Municipality of the Greater Accra Region.
Bodies of eight of the kids found earlier were sent to the Korle Teaching Hospital morgue.
The body of the 9th child was retrieved yesterday morning after frantic search by concerned youth.
The Municipal Director of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), Christian Afiadenyo, has said that three pupils survived the disaster.
He said one boy among the pupils was operating the boat before the incident occurred though he is not sure about this information.
Mr Afiadenyo, said the boy may have been one of the three survivors.
The town is said to have been thrown into a state of mourning since the incident occurred.
The pupils are said to have drowned late afternoon on Wednesday, May 10, while returning from school.
Twelve people, including the boat owner were on board when the incident occured, leaving nine of them dead.
Three people managed to swim to safety.
Initially, one child was unaccounted for, but after a search on Thursday morning, her body was found.
Reacting to the news, Africa Education Watch in a press statement yesterday blamed the Education Ministry and the GES for the unfortunate incident which is not the first to be recorded in the country.
According to EduWatch, when a similar incident occurred at Atitagorme/Wayokope, it prompted the Ministry to ensure that life jackets were provided to all pupils and teachers in island communities, but the Ministry failed to heed its advice.
It disclosed that the Ministry only supplied 100 life jackets to the affected community at the time, without extending the support to the other island communities.
“Today’s devastating news about the painful death of nine (9) children who drowned under similar circumstances is very unfortunate and completely avoidable if the GES acted responsibly on our recommendations.
“It is unacceptable that within a space of four (4) months in only two (2) districts, 17 poor children have lost their lives in their quest to claim their right to basic education,” it said.
It has thus reiterated its demand for the GES and Education Ministry to ensure that life jackets are provided to students and teachers of island communities to avoid any future undesirable situations.
“We reiterate our call to the GES, Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection to develop a roadmap towards immediately providing life jackets for pupils and teachers in island communities, liaise with the relevant local authorities to strengthen health and safety compliance, and construct schools in island communities.
“Parliamentary oversight on this matter is very much required,” it added.