The management of the Premiere Academy in Lugbe area of Abuja, on Sunday, debunked claims by the Coalition of Gender Based Violence Responders that students had sworn to an oath of secrecy on many issues, including the death of a 14-year-old SS1 student, Keren-Happuch Akpagher.
Leader of the coalition, Lemmy Ughegbe, had laid the allegations against the school during a press conference held in Abuja on Thursday and attended by Keren-Happuch’s mother, Vivien Akpagher.
Speaking on the oath allegation, the acting Principal of the school, Chris Akinsowon, described the claim as blackmail and deliberate attempt to conceal the truth. “How can secondary students take an oath of secrecy? This is nothing but blackmail and an attempt to divert the minds of the public from the truth,” he said.
Ughegbe also alleged that a preliminary report of the autopsy conducted on the deceased by the doctor appointed by the police, Dr Desmond Okonkwo of the Maitama General Hospital, revealed that she was raped.
Akinsowon maintained that the autopsy result had yet to come out, stressing that it was part of the investigation the school insisted must be done, adding that Premiere Academy was earnestly awaiting the result.
“The autopsy result is not out yet. It is a part of the investigation process the school insists must be allowed to take its course. We earnestly await the result and plead that nothing should be said to pre-empt whatever the outcome may be,” he stated.
On the staff member of the school, who was allegedly sent on an indefinite suspension and later dismissed, Akinsowon said it was “based on careless talk with a student as part of our commitment to making the school safe for our students and earning the confidence of our parents.”
The Acting Principal said in the event that any form of sexual assault happened to the deceased in the school and leading to her death, the management would join hands with all relevant security agencies to prosecute such a person in line with the laws of the land.