Learner gives birth on school premises

By Eliaser Ndeyanale at Oshigambo

A 14-year-old learner at Oshigambo High School gave birth on the school premises on Sunday night but the baby was stillborn.

The mother, a Grade 8 learner was taken to Onandjokwe Hospital. Sources privy to the matter said the learner went to a female teacher’s house on Sunday complaining about a stomach-ache but it was indeed labour pains. The teacher called a nurse to come and attend to the girl. The expectant girl’s water broke and she was rushed to hospital, where the baby was declared dead on arrival.

It was not immediately clear if the baby’s father is also a learner at the school, since the school management refused to give any information regarding the circumstance of the learner’s pregnancy    or the baby’s death, saying the information is sensitive.

Principal Pinehas Ekongo confirmed the incident but referred this publication to one of the school board members, Obed Mushaandja, who in turn referred this reporter to his colleague on the school board, Revered Wilhelm Hainene, the representative of ELCIN on the school board, as the school is owned by the church.

Hainane confirmed knowledge of the case but was reluctant to share information, saying it is not for public consumption.

“Honestly speaking, I’m not willing to share this with the media because this is a child whose life is still ahead and to share this with the media and also without the consent of the parents, I just feel that I might go to the other extent, which is not good to share with you at this stage because the whole ELCIN council is not even briefed and I did not even talk to the parents.

“Only the guardian has been informed, I am not really sure where they (parents) are. Therefore I am saying it’s just premature to share it with the media… No, when people see it they can already detect what it is. That’s why I am saying, the incident has happened. For me to share it with the media [would be] going to the extent of destroying the child.

“The child was taken to the hospital. We don’t have more information. More information will be coming up when the child goes through counseling and so on. Therefore, at this time I am saying, although I have the full report, it does not include the whole thing. We do not know if what we have is true because it is just being said at that stage where people are already rushing asking questions, like what is this, what is going on. At the moment the child is in the hands of the guardian.

“Some of this information of this nature might even keep popping up in the child’s mind. We might say we are informing the public but we are destroying the public. “That is why I am saying it is not really the right time for us to share it with the media,” Hainane rightly insisted.

Contacted for comment, Oshikoto acting director of education Vilho Shipuata said he was not aware of the matter.  Oshikoto regional Nampol spokesperson inspector Ellen Nehale said she was also not aware of the incident.