That All May Be One Except The Rastafarian Student

The Thunder newspaper is taken aback at the hypocrisy in motion at ‘Motown’, nickname of the Achimota School, over the refusal to enroll two fully qualified students simply because they belong to a religion which requires them to wear dreadlocks.

Even when the law courts say the School is wrong and should admit the students, Achimota School says it would not admit the students and would appeal the court ruling.

Achimota School insists all students must wear short hair but interestingly the same school allows Caucasian students on exchange programmes to wear long hair in the school.

Never before has the long hair of the foreign students been an issue or affected the smooth academic work of the student body or the administration of the Achimota School for that matter.

But for some unexplained reasons, Achimota School is insisting that the long natural hair of the two Rastafarian Ghanaians would create some sort of uncontainable inconvenience for the school and other students.

The exact inconvenience is yet to be told to the public.

It is shocking this same Achimota School has the motto “Ut Omnes Unum Sint” meaning “that all may be one” and the school itself has founding fathers who believed in the principles and philosophy that in the quest for education, every one ought to assimilate, integrate and synergize in equal harmony; be they male or female, black or white, rich or poor, irrespective of their religion or creed.

The current leadership of the school should be told in plain language that when the school’s motto says Ut Omnes Unum Sint” meaning “that all may be one”, it includes the Rastafarian student as well.

Here we are in the year 2021; the same school is insisting that students of the Rastafarian religion who by the practice of their religion are to wear dreadlocks are banned from enrollment to start classes unless they shave off their sacred locks.

This is happening in a country where there is freedom of religion.

This doggedness on the part of Achomota School that Rastafarian students with long hair are not permitted in the school is happening at a time the same school permits Caucasian students with long hair be they artificial or natural hair.

Achimota School is yet to tell how exactly the long natural hair of the Rastafarian students would impede on their academic pursuits but the long hair of Caucasian students would not have same effect.

These same Rastafarian students had the same long dreadlocks when they were in the Junior High School and they passed their final examination with flying colours.

They were outstanding students what got placed in Achimota School by the computer school placement programme based on MERIT and the strength of their pass marks from Junior High.

Even when parents of the students being discriminated against decided to seek redress in a court of competent jurisdiction and they get a ruling in their favour that Achimota School, cannot use its self made internal regulations to deny the two students of their fundamental rights to education as stated in Ghana’s Constitution, the school says it would appeal the ruling and never admit the students unless they shave off their dreadlocks.

Perhaps the motto, “Ut Omnes Unum Sint” meaning “that all may be one” does not include the Rastafarian student and the school would also not tell the correlation between long natural hair and how it inconveniences academic pursuit.

It has become clear the issue has to do more with over bloated bruised egos rather than any meaningful or intelligent academic discourse.

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