Two weeks into the 2014/2015 academic year, North West Regional Delegate of Basic Education, Susan Fon, says not less than 31 underground schools have been uncovered. Education officials say if parents go ahead to register their children in sealed schools, they will be considered accomplices.

“There are some 31 clandestine private schools in the North West Region. 10 schools have been banned in Belo Sub-division; 13 in Ndu Sub-division and two in Fundong Sub-division. Benakuma sub division has one and Menchum Valley Sub-division has five clandestine schools. Most of them lack declaration orders for creation, as such are not supposed to open their doors this academic year,” Fon told the state-owned daily.

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The delegate emphasized it is not forbidden to create schools in a bid to partner with government to promote and enhance education in Cameroon, but argued that it must be done the right way by following the correct procedure. “There are some people who think that since they own a house, the latter can just become a school,” she wondered.

Apart from the North West, the Littoral Regional Commission in charge of the closure of clandestine schools recently shut down some 49 clandestine schools in the secondary education sector. The crackdown on underground schools took another twist on September 11 and 12 in Douala as some school authorities ended in police custody.

© Valentine MULANGO