Source: The Chronicle – Breaking news
Michael Magoronga, firstname.lastname@example.org
GOVERNMENT has secured development partners to spearhead the reconstruction of Globe and Phoenix Primary School in Kwekwe District, which is set to commence by the end of this term.
The old school was decommissioned last year in March after some classroom blocks collapsed into underground mining tunnels left by illegal mining activities.
After getting a piece of land courtesy of Kuvimba Mining Holdings for the construction of a new school, authorities in Kwekwe have been facing financial challenges to start the construction and rescue the learners who have been conducting lessons in tents and in the open.
Speaking after officiating at a clean-up campaign held at Kwekwe Primary School on Friday, Primary and Secondary Education Minister, Torerai Moyo, said the Government had engaged several partners who are willing to complement its efforts in the reconstruction of the school.
“We have secured the services of The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints who have agreed to construct some classroom blocks maybe this term for next term. Authorities in Kwekwe are seized with the matter and they will spearhead the construction process,” said Minister Moyo.
He said the church was still in the budgetary process and has committed to prioritise the school given the situation of the learners.
“They have agreed to give the school top priority given the fate the learners are going through. We take their word because in November last year, we commissioned 62 classroom blocks they built in Bulawayo over three months. So, they have proved what they are capable of,” he said.
Minister Moyo said the Government was also getting assistance from individuals and longtime partners.
“We are friends with the Global Partnership in Education through their implementing partners CAMFED and Unicef. These are some of the partners we are working with on this project,” he said.
“Once all paperwork is done, they are ready to commence the works. We want the job to be expedited because the situation is not conducive for learners.”
Minister Moyo also urged parents to pay their tuition fees on time to allow schools to implement developmental projects for the benefit of learners.
“In as much as the Government is clear that schools should not send learners away pupils for not paying fees, this is not a ticket for parents to ignore paying their tuition fees. Parents should play their role so that schools can function properly,” he said.
This comes after Kwekwe High School authorities revealed that only 20 percent of parents had paid their tuition fees in full.
Minister Moyo also said the Government was doing everything to ensure that funds for the less privileged under the Basic Education Assistance Model (BEAM) are paid to schools.
“Government introduced safety nets for vulnerable children through BEAM but schools are yet to receive the money dating back to as far as 2022. Let me assure schools that by this February they would have received their dues,” he said.
“In fact, we had a meeting and agreed that by the beginning of February, schools should have received the first tranche of $9 billion so that they can operate properly.”
The minister also emphasised the need for schools to maintain clean environments to avoid the spread of cholera.