63-Year-Old BECE Candidate Steals Show as DCE Tour Exams Centers

A 63-year-old Rita Offen, a mother of five and a pupil of Obuasi Independent JHS “A”, also a candidate of this year’s BECE was the center of attraction when Obuasi East District Chief Executive (DCE) Madam Faustina Ammisah toured centers hosting the 2021 Basic Education Certificate Examination (B.E.C.E) in her District on November 17, 2021.

A wrinkle stricken Mrs.Rita Offen, clad in her ‘Tea and Bread’ uniform with an adolescent-like spectacle looking sixteen, detailing to the DCE what informed her choice of pursuing education even at her old age said, the cheating she’s endured in her petty trading career was enough to compel her to seek formal education albeit her children being graduates. Although she became a laughing stock from the beginning, her determination broke all odds when she started in primary four(4) at the age of 58.

“The most important thing for me in pursuing formal education was to be able to read my Bible and write and I can do now, I’m happy,” she said.

She admonished her fellow women to pursue education irrespective of their age, to her female mates, she advised that they become wary of young men who will lure them and get them pregnant, but to focus on their education, delayed gratification she said is the best for a bright future.

A visibly surprised Madam Faustina Ammisah, DCE for Obuasi East addressing journalists after her tour heaped praises on good old Mrs. Offen, and said her act has inspired her and many others, she took a turn to advise the pupils, especially the ladies to focus on their education as it is a sure route to success.

“I took part in this exam years ago, reigning Ghana’s Most Beautiful Queen, Sarfoaa went through this same path but dreamed big and furthered our education, today here we are, you can be like me or Sarfoaa only bypassing this exam and furthering to higher levels”.

District Director of Education, Mr. Kwabena Owusu Nketiah detailed that a total of 2,097 pupils are taking part in the examination in the Obuasi East District, out of that,1,005 are males with 1,092 being females. Private schools presented 551 pupils whiles public schools have 1,546. According to Mr. Nketiah, they’re yet to record an uncouth act as the pupils have generally been calm and cooperative. He was quick to add that 13 female pupils are not taking part in the exams as a result of being pregnant. In total absentees are 41 candidates from day one to day three.

By: Kofi Owusu Brimpong

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