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					         T5 STAR EVENTS SCHOOLS


                   School Report: October 2009

In this report: Guinea-Bissau has a new President
                T5 has a new School Director
                Student numbers in Missira: French 742 English 738

Ercilio Evora

We are saddened to lose the services of “Mr. T5”, Ercilio Evora, who
has taken up a post with the European Union’s office in Bissau.
Ercilio’s contribution to T5 has been immense, as a founder member
and as School Director since November 2007. Although no longer
able to continue as School Director, Ercilio remains a member of T5.

Fernando Sa

We are delighted to welcome Fernando Sa to the post of T5 School
Director. Fernando needs no introduction for T5ers: founder member
of T5ngo, Teacher Training Manager, member of the Exec. Details of
Fernando’s “team” can be found below.

T Cinq

For the first time in T5’s history we now have (marginally) more
students of French than students of English. This represents an
excellent achievement for “le collectif Francais” who have been
delivering French courses since T5’s arrival in Missira. Also for the
first time in T5’s history the T5 Executive of four contains two English
teachers and two French teachers:

Fernando Sa, as reported, is the new School Director. As well as
having overall responsibility for T5 schools, he will focus on ELT
Development, Methodology Training and Management Training.
We welcome Venancio Faustino Mendonca as the new School Sub-
Director. Venancio will assist Fernando as well as focusing on French
Language Development, reviewing the T5 constitution and
Management Team liaison. Daniel Na Dunda remains as Accounts
Manager, responsible for salaries and banking, contracts and UK
liaison. And finally, we welcome Iares Mane as Finance Manager.
Iares will focus primarily on the management of the fees office, as
well as developing French materials and managing computer training.
Former Exec member, Namir Lopes, remains as PR and Events
Manager, joining Amadu Djau, French Strategic Director, heading up
the Management Team.

Changes of an altogether more violent kind nationally:

UN News Service 26th September 2009:

“Determining who is responsible for a series of assassinations of
senior political and military figures in Guinea-Bissau earlier this year
is essential to consolidating the rule of law in the troubled West
African country, its Prime Minister told the General Assembly today as
he pledged that there would be no impunity for the perpetrators.
Carlos Gomez Jr. told the annual high-level segment of the Assembly
that the government ‘will do everything in its power’ to ensure that a
committee tasked with finding out who carried out the killings can
conduct its work ‘in a peaceful, transparent and credible manner.’
Already suffering from turmoil following years of political instability,
misrule, grinding poverty and a flourishing illicit drug trade, Guinea-
Bissau was further hit this year by assassinations of then president
Joao Bernardo Vieira as well as the armed forces’ chief of staff and a
presidential candidate. The murders ‘revealed the vulnerabilities of
our rule of law and the weaknesses of the system of national defence
and security,’ said Mr. Gomes. He noted that the government was
seeking financial, technical and other support from the African Union,
the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the
Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) to ensure that

its committee investigating the killings can conduct its work with
‘objectivity, transparency and speed.’ Resolving the murders is ‘an
essential condition to ensure true justice, to contribute to the
consolidation of the democratic rule of law and the protection and
promotion of human rights.’ The Prime Minister stressed that his
government is ‘firmly and unequivocally’ against impunity – ‘we will
not be a party to it, nor give coverage to any type of crime.’ But he
also said that many State institutions in the country had responded
well since the crisis earlier this year and in July the Supreme Court
declared that Malam Bacai Sanha of the governing African Party for
the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde was the winner
of that month’s presidential poll. Mr. Gomes said the elections had
been deemed free, fair and transparent by international observers as
well as by political parties and candidates and he was confident the
country has restored ‘constitutional normality’ and a measure of

Materials Shipment

The shipment (from Rotterdam to Bissau) of materials – last reported
as “somewhere on the open seas” arrived safely in Bissau. Many
thanks to all who contributed materials and especially to Maddy
Sheals at Star Events Group and Jan van Mannen, the Netherlands
Honourary Consul in Bissau, for taking care of the logistics. It looks
increasingly likely that we will be able to send out more materials and
thanks go to Annie Bachini, Marilyn Gerry and Heather Qualtrough for
their recent generous donations. As previously reported, we still
urgently require French language teaching materials but any French
or English language material will be gratefully accepted. The small T5
library is currently under construction. This facility allows many of our
students to access reading material in English and French for the
very first time.

Regional T5

We are currently operating schools in Antula, Bafata, Bula and Sao
Domingos. Armando Crima reports that T5 Bafata now has 9 English
classes and 2 French classes. Mibtan Nancanha is co-ordinating

English and French classes at T5 Antula while Dinis Mendonca is co-
ordinating English classes in Bula. Despite the recent “unrest” on the
Casamance border we’ve been able to continue to run classes in Sao

T5 Cape Verde

T5 Praia is now T5 Assomada. Assomada, like Praia, is on the island
of Sao Tiago. Julio Imbula and Lembem Essamai are currently
recruiting students for a series of “English for Specific Purposes”
courses. Supporters can contrast the rather dilapidated premises we
use in Guinea-Bissau with the state-of–the art facilities in Cape Verde
by clicking on to

Helder Jose Lopes and Bacar Sera

We say goodbye to our Student Welfare Manager, Helder. We wish
him all the best in Portugal. Bacar, our Information Manager, has
moved to the Bijagos Islands. Helder and Bacar both made important
contributions to T5.

Management Team Appointments

Braima Ba replaces Bacar as Information Manager. Paulino Perreira
replaces Helder as Student Welfare Manager. Paulino will also be
responsible for developing Equal Opportunities at T5. Francelino
(“Frank”) Sanca is now Support Staff Manager. Mamadu Uolo Injai is
NGO Manager and Felipe Batista is the ELT Examinations Manager.
Jean Martins remains in the team as French Teacher Development
Manager and Antonio Bissuk remains in the team as Statistics
Manager and Accounts Assistant.


The phrase “digital divide” barely does justice to the situation in
Guinea-Bissau. Internet facilities are scarce (Bissau only), expensive
and unreliable. To install the internet at the Missira School, according
to service provider Orange, would cost 169,500xof (approximately

£200) with a monthly charge of 77,500xof (just under £100). Clearly,
this is well beyond our means. Until six months ago only two T5ers
had e-mail addresses. Most T5 teachers had never used a computer.
Thanks to the contributions of supporters we have been able to
provide training at the ICT (Institute for Science and Technology) in
Bissau for all Exec members and Senior Managers and will shortly
have the entire Management Team online. In addition to this
training, support from the UK is paying for cybercafe charges
enabling T5ers to access materials. In a country with no bookshops
the impact of this training cannot be overstated. And there are other


T5 is essentially a group of young teachers trying to make a success
of a project in extremely demanding circumstances. It is not always
clear how to be a good teacher and how to be a good school
manager in these circumstances. The fact that many T5ers are now
online has opened up an exciting development: we welcome Heather
Qualtrough and Maddy Sheals as T5 Management Mentors; we also
welcome Hugh Dellar and Andrew Walkley as ELT Mentors. T5ers
now have access to considerable expertise.
Supporters willing to act as mentors for T5 teachers and/or managers
please call 020 7265 1779.

“Demanding Circumstances” – a brief history.

November 2002: President Yala says he plans to dissolve parliament
and call early elections. The move comes amid a long-running row
with his prime-minister.

April 2003: Ercilio, Freddy, Khadijah, Matilde, Orlando and Tony K.
identify themselves as “The Tchico Te Teacher Training Team”.

July 2003: “The Team” deliver classes at various venues including
Kwame N’Krume High School.

14th September 2003: Military coup ousts President Yala.

28th September 2003: Civilian administration headed by interim
President Henrique Rosa and interim Prime Minister Antonio Artur
Rosa is sworn in after military, political parties agree to hold
parliamentary and presidential elections.

November 2003: The team provide free English classes for girls and
women at various venues including Tchico Te Teacher Training

March 2004: Former ruling party, the PAIGC, wins general election.

July 2004: The team find premises, Taborda School in Sintra.

September 2004: The team expands: Bacar, Belmira, Cecil, Crima,
Fernando, Joao, Julio Imbula, Lembem and Namir all train up to join
the team.

October 2004: Mutinous soldiers kill the head of the armed forces in
pursuit of demands which include payment of outstanding wages.

December 2004: T5ngo is formally established.

April 2005: Joao Bernardo Vieira, former president toppled in 1999
rebellion, returns from exile in Portugal.

May 2005: Former president Kumba Yala, who was deposed in 2003,
declares that he is still the rightful head of state. He stages a brief
occupation of the presidency building.

July 2005: Former military ruler Joao Bernardo Vieira wins a run-off
vote in presidential elections.

August 2005: T5 classes continue at Taborda School, Sintra.

October 2005: After a few weeks in office, President Vieira sacks the
government of Prime Minister Carlos Gomez Junior.

12th February 2006: Star Events Group, a UK-based company, agree
to support T5. This support enables T5 to rent a school in Missira,
Bissau with 12 classrooms. Amadu, Jean and Venancio join T5 to
provide French classes. Freddy Gama becomes T5’s first School

March / April 2006: Guinea-Bissau soldiers battle Senegalese rebels
along the southern border.

June 2006: Unions call a three-day strike over civil service wage
arrears. The regional economic grouping ECOWAS promises to cover
teachers’ pay.

July 2006: T5 expands to Bafata and Gabu.

October 2006: Guinea-Bissau appeals for international help to stop
people-traffickers using its remote coastline to smuggle migrants,
including Asians, to Europe.

November 2006: T5 Management Team (MT) established.

March-April 2007: Prime-Minister Aristides Gomes resigns after his
government loses a no-confidence vote. Martinho Ndafa Kabi is
appointed as consensus prime minister.

May 2007: T5 School in Hafia established.

June 2007: Donors have one last opportunity to save Guinea-Bissau
from chaos and to combat Latin American drug cartels, the UN and
International Monetary Fund warn.

October 2007: Maddy Sheals, HR Director of Star Events Group, visits

November 2007: Ercilio Evora becomes T5 School Director.

December 2007: Parliament passes law guaranteeing amnesty for
any violence committed during the years of political unrest between
1980 and 2004.

January 2008: Over 1,700 students at the Missira school. T5
featuring in TV advertisements.

July 2008: One of the three major parties quits the national unity
coalition, triggering a political crisis.

July/August 2008: The justice minister and attorney-general both say
they have received death threats over the arrest of three
Venezuelans, the head of air traffic control and his deputy.

August 2008: President Vieira dissolves parliament, which
automatically brings about the fall of the government of Martinho
Ndafa Kabi. Mr. Vieira appoints former prime minister Carlos Correia
to head the government in the run-up to parliamentary elections in
November 2008.

September 2008: T5 goes international…T5 Praia, Cape Verde

November 2008: President Vieira survives a gun attack on his home
by mutinous soldiers in what appears to be a failed coup.

January 2009: T5 starts English classes in Sao Domingos.

2nd March 2009: President Joao Bernardo Vieira is shot dead by
renegade soldiers, hours after a bomb attack which killed the army’s
chief of staff, General Tagme Na Waie.

June 2009: First round of presidential polls. Days earlier, military
police kill one of the candidates in bid to foil a ‘coup’.

July 2009: Entente cordiale at T5. Parity and Anglo-French power-
sharing at T5.

July 2009: Malam Bacai Sanha wins presidential election in a run-off.

August 2009: Fernando Sa becomes T5’s third School Director.

October 2009: T5 Bula is established.

Working at T5

Some people never - or rarely - get a mention in these
reports…here’s putting that right: Maria Nhare and Saba Camara
keep the Missira school clean and tidy. Umaro Djao and Sadjo Djao
keep us safe overnight. Domingos A. Dias, Quintino da Silva and
Ricardo A. Pinto run the administration office. Arnaldo Cajucam,
Kounta Sadio, Amalia de Pina Rodrigues and Augusto Oliveira all
teach French in Missira. Womba Tchuda and Serilio Mendes Pereira
both teach French in Antula. Mamadu Cande, Sadja Manafa, Adriano
Tchuda, Almame Sane, Mancamam Nhasse, Idrissa Balde, Isaac
Lopes Nbana, Sabino Ie, Alexandre Djata and Wassi Antonio Neb
Bocum all teach English in Missira. Felix Embana teaches English in

Supporting T5

You have cash and you have expertise. Please donate generously.
Introductions to T5ers working in Guinea-Bissau can be arranged via Cash can be sent to T5ngo’s UK bank
account: HSBC 40-02-33 71493671.

Stop Press

Irinnews October 9th: “Mine-free farms for the first time since 1974”
For 35 years, hundreds of villagers living in Suar in the Cacheu region
of Guinea-Bissau have been too scared to cultivate the land around
their villages for fear of landmines. The town, 40 km from Ingore
near the northern border with Senegal, has been contaminated by
landmines and unexploded ordnance (UXO) in the 1974 liberation

war. “The area was not safe,” Daniel Camara, 28, told IRIN as he
cycled along a path once surrounded by mines. “But now we can
move around. We are no longer living in fear – they’ve taken our bad
luck away.”

More on this story and other news from Guinea-Bissau at


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