Dancehall artiste Samini is questioning why schools in 2021 still have rules that limit people’s right to education after Achimota School refused to admit two Rastafarian students because of their hair.
In an opinion piece, the musician said that it is strange people are hiding behind the rules to question a children’s rights to education instead of his intellect and contribution to the society.
“The many responsible men and women we see out there have all been shaped and fashioned by various rules, regulations and guidelines either from the home, church, community and in many cases, school. But have all these guidelines, rules and regulations been truly helpful? Are some still relevant in this new age?” he said.
Samini said that the stands of Achimota School is not only questionable but smacks of intimidation, discrimination and even to some extent, “racism!”
He explained there is no proof that accepting the students to learn in the school will affect discipline or other students learning with them neither will it affect the student’s intelligence.
“Let’s even leave the public schools and turn our focus on the private schools that allow any kind of hair preference on their premises. Do we have any records of any troubles being created? I don’t think so.”
“How will the locks make other students uncomfortable? How will the locs affect his performance? Or wait, will the locs perhaps turn into snakes at midnight and hound other students? Can someone please help me understand why I cannot wear my hair the way I want to school in 2021?”
Samini urged his fellow Rastafarians to work together and build schools that will not only allow diversity and inclusivity but also ensure their kids have places to study without their rights being infringe upon.
“Until Rasta builds schools like the Muslims, Catholics, Methodists, SDAs and so on have, can Rasta hold its own to ensure no one pushes Rasta about over-rules Rasta must obey in everyone’s interest?”
“Let us not tear each other up or hurl invectives at one of Africa’s greatest educational institutions. Rasta is gentle. Rasta is wise. Rasta is strong. Rasta is obedient. Rasta understands and follows rules. Rasta is disciplined. If Achimota school cannot take Rasta, let Rasta move on.”
Meanwhile, half a dozen schools including international institutions have queued up to offer unconditional admission, including full scholarships plus meals to Rastafarian triplets who have been denied admission to some Senior High Schools (SHS) due to their dreadlocks.
This is coming at a time where sisters of one of the boys, who were admitted by St. John’s Grammar School were also asked to cut down their hair at the height of the controversy about whether to be admitted or not.
Explaining the motive behind the gesture, school authorities of one of the schools (name withheld) said, “We do believe that no student should be denied education.
We also believe that, yes, students need to learn to obey rules but those rules in any way should not deny students the opportunity to education, which is a basic right for kids.
“So our own rules allow us to admit students that are Rastafarians, perhaps who have dreadlocks [and] we felt that why not give them the opportunity?” he said.