School knowledge factory, not birthday venue: Parents

PARENTS and teachers’ unions have expressed disquiet over President Robert Mugabe’s decision to hold his 93rd birthday at a primary school in Matobo district, saying the move was likely to disrupt lessons.

Source: School knowledge factory, not birthday venue: Parents – NewsDay Zimbabwe February 10, 2017


Mugabe’s birthday celebrations will be held at Rhodes Estate Preparatory School (Reps) in Matabeleland South province this month end.

Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) president, Takavafira Zhou said it was unfair for Mugabe to host a birthday bash at a school during the school term, as activities ahead of the event may lead to disruptions in learning.

“It is known that State security agents, soldiers and various organisers of the event will disrupt the learning process, as they will be moving in and out of the school willy-nilly,” he said.

“Mugabe is a teacher by profession, he must understand what learning and teaching involve, from the classroom to extra-curricula activities.

“On that particular day, students would need to be on the grounds practising for their sports. Secondly the school is a boarding school, it’s not like children will be away at the weekend.

“Mugabe should know better that a school is not a birthday venue, but it is a knowledge factory not a place of partying,” he said.

Parents, who spoke to Southern Eye, decried the situation, saying preparations leading to the birthday will disturb school operations.

“Zanu PF should respect us and our children, why don’t they go to schools that are not boarding schools, where children would be away at the weekend,” one parent bemoaned.

“Now they are busy exposing our children to soldiers and State security agents and that is not fair.”

Last year’s celebrations were held in Masvingo, and this year, close to 100 000 people are expected to swarm Matobo district for the event.