Long-serving St Boniface principal quits

18 February 2021 | Education

KENYA KAMBOWE



UTOKOTA

After serving at St Boniface College for the past 17 years, Mary Phillis Yesudasan returned to her native India in December 2020.

Yesudasan was the principal of the church-owned school since 2003.

St Boniface has been the best-performing private school in the country for a number of years and much of that success was attributed to Yesudasan’s strict discipline measures.

Despite the school having being criticised for only accepting top-performing learners, and accused of bribing education officials for access to examination papers, Yesudasan over the years remained adamant that their success was purely the result of hard work and strict discipline.

Unceremonious

School staff say Yesudasan left without saying goodbye to them.

When they returned to work last month, they were called to a meeting and informed that Yesudasan had left, they said.

The administrator of the Catholic Church at Rundu, Linus Ngenomesho, said Yesudasan felt her time in Namibia had come to an end.

Asked why there was no farewell ceremony, Ngenomesho said the former principal wished to leave quietly and without fanfare.

He admitted that the principal’s resignation came as a surprise to him, as the last time he had spoken to her, there was no indication that she planned to leave.

Yesudasan had no family in Namibia. Her husband, with whom she had come to Namibia from Tanzania in 2001, died in 2013.

After his death, she remained in Namibia to fulfil her ambition of making St Boniface College the best school in the country, which she achieved.

Ugly accusations

It was not an easy journey for Yesudasan.

Last October, learners at the school staged a protest during which they accused her of being a “dictator” and claimed that they lived like “prisoners in a concentration camp”.

At the time, Yesudasan admitted to being strict on discipline and credited that for the school’s excellent academic performance.

When asked about the progress of the investigation into the learners’ claims, Ngenomesho said he was not privy to the content of their petition.

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