Leroy Dzenga Herald Reporter
First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa yesterday launched a nationwide schools Covid-19 disinfection programme, which will see schools getting disinfected throughout the June examination period and the schools term meant to resume at the end of July.
The programme being led by the First Lady is meant to ensure learner safety at a time when academic activity, which had been affected by Covid-19, is resuming.
In a speech read on her behalf by Primary and Secondary Education Minister Ambassador Cain Mathema at the launch, the First Lady saluted efforts being done by the education sector in preparation for the re-opening of schools and promised her long standing assistance.
“I understand that a major part of making schools safe and healthy against the Covid-19 pandemic is the disinfection of all the spaces that learners, teachers and non-teaching staff will occupy,” she said.
“I am a firm believer that it takes a whole village to raise a child. This is the reason why my office and the Angel of Hope Foundation mobilised resources to add to our own contribution to this village approach to safeguarding our school population.”
During the launch, the First Lady donated disinfecting chemicals to the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, which will be used at schools in all the country’s 10 provinces.
She urged those with the capacity to join in the campaign to do so.
“I have come to launch the First Lady’s School Disinfection Programme with these disinfectants,” said the First Lady.
“This is my humble gesture as Mother of the Nation, as I invite more corporates, civil society, faith-based organisations and other players among our citizens to also come forward and donate towards the effort to make our schools safe against Covid-19.”
Primary and Secondary Education permanent secretary Ms Thumisang Thabela hailed the campaign by the First Lady, describing her as a friend of the education sector.
“The First Lady has always assisted us in the education sector,” she said. “Recently, she joined a key pillar of access to education which is the schools feeding programme. She also has a number of school going children whose fees she pays. We appreciate her contribution to education.”
Deputy Minister Edgar Moyo said the education sector will benefit from the First Lady’s kind heart.
“I am delighted to say that for us in the Primary and Secondary Education sector, the First Lady and the Angel of Hope Foundation have clearly demonstrated compassion that they have for the children and their teachers,” he said.
Since the outbreak of Covid-19, the First Lady has been leading a spirited awareness campaign, which has seen her taking the safety message to all four corners of the country, especially in marginalised rural areas.