Makoni raps Zanu PF for school dropouts

HARARE - Opposition leader Simba Makoni has accused the Zanu PF government of consciously killing the future of
Zimbabwean youths by withholding funds for Basic Education Assistance Module (Beam).

In an interview with the Daily News on Sunday, the Mavambo Kusile Dawn (MKD) leader said President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF was pursuing selfish interests at the expense of public accountability.

Ngoni Masoka, the permanent secretary in the ministry of Labour and Social Welfare told Parliament last week that in the 2014 national budget, government allocated inadequate funds for the education of vulnerable children under the Beam programme.

Makoni, who entered into a Grand Coalition with Morgan Tsvangirai ahead of presidential elections in a futile effort to end Mugabe’s rule, said Zanu PF’s priorities were misplaced.

A former Finance minister in Mugabe’s government, Makoni questioned government’s wisdom in acquiring top-of-the-range vehicles for top officials when the country’s health and education infrastructure was

“We have always said Zanu PF and Mugabe no longer have interest in the future of the country,” said Makoni.

“They have chosen to dump the future of the young generation by denying them the right to education.
They have consciously resolved to kill the future of the country, literally burying it underground because our children are the future,” he added.

While acknowledging that government was broke, the former Sadc executive secretary said the little funds available in the country must be channelled to the right things.

He also said it was unacceptable that orphans and other disadvantaged children who depend on State assistance were dropping out of school.

He added that it was government’s moral obligation to take care of society’s disadvantaged, particularly children.

Makoni lamented the dearth of servant leadership in government, saying there was a yawning gap between lifestyles of junior government employees especially uniformed forces and their pampered bosses.

He said the uniformed forces were worse off than they were before independence in 1980.

“If you go to the homes of senior police and army officers there are fleets of vehicles, yet junior officers who do the real work use public transport,” Makoni said.

Makoni blamed the country’s financial problems on “Zanu PF’s tendency to pick up fights with people who can help the country.”

“We shall continue our efforts to work with those in government, and others in politics, business, and civil society; to find ways to alleviate the many hardships confronting the people every day,” Makoni

“In this regard, we commend and thank players in civil society, and the international community, for their sterling efforts to stem the humanitarian crises caused by food shortages, HIV/Aids and other diseases, domestic and gender-based violence, crime and corruption, state ineptitude and heartlessness.”

He said he would strive to invigorate MKD into the “a party of choice” in order to “generate hope among the people, that they can create a better future for themselves.

“We remain convinced that our vision, values and principles form a solid foundation for the economic, social, cultural and moral recovery of our nation, and future progress for all our people,” he said.

Comments (7)

tell them Dr Makoni. indeed your time will come. you shall lead this country sooner.

servant leadership - 19 January 2014

Taurai nyathi! Zim needs sober leaders like you.

Dzimbahwe - 19 January 2014

Well said sir - the country needs selfless leaders. At this time ministers, senators, MPs and all those being given cars from tax payers money should realize the need for smaller cheaper cars. This would enable economic growth. Ladies and gentlemen you will always get these cars when the economy starts kicking again.

Tendaupenyu - 19 January 2014

What needs to be done is revisit this BEAM thing. Check why headmasters allow some well off kids to be put on BEAM. I know BAM forms will be with the Headmasters who then in some schools form a committee which then vet these people but from my experience I have seen such being overturned and you get undeserved children on BEAM. Revisit BEAM, see parents who deliberately lied about incapacity, if possible arrest them. My appeal also is to the Ministry seriously letting Mutendi High off hook sets a wrong precedent.

Maita Manyuka - 20 January 2014

Mutendi High School can not be allowed to break the rules at will or was the Minister lying to the nation? I also take issue with the issue of levies why would a school charge upwards of USD 100 per term in a government primary school? Why should there be no guidance on what is reasonable as the ministry knows or should know how much these levies should be..what is the standard cost of running a school such that these levies should be this high? Second, who is responsible for approving these usurous levies..what are their basis for the numbers being thrown all over the show? If most boarding schools are charging around USD 500 per term can we have an intelligent analysis how this figure was arrived at? Finally why are schools being allowed to exceed their enrolment quotas..? Teacher student ratios have become ridiculous in some schools while other schools are almost about to close for lack of students? When is the Minister going to do a lifestyle audit of the country's headmasters and those ministry officials who interface with these headmasters? The stench of corruption and theft has gone through the roof..can the Daily News get a Minister to address a press conference where these questions are asked.

gutter poet - 20 January 2014

You are better positioned than Dumiso Dabengwa and Welshman Ncube. Hold on tight time will tell.

Shepy Tarzy - 20 January 2014

As a follow up on the above can the Consumer council which does its so called consumer surveys guide the minister on what would be a fair amount to charge at a boarding school. This is more important to consumers than regurgitation of useless statistics which have no relevance. Tell like you have done for households what is a fair cost of running a boarding school..(I am not holding my breath though) I try below to break down the cost for running a household per day per person; 1. Food: Maize meal 100 grams@ 70 cents per kg=7cents for two meals= 14 cents per day. Bread one loaf for 5@1-00= 20 cents Vegetables =5 cents each Cooking Oil= 4 cents this assumes 2 litre cooking oil can make a meal for 100 students per meal @4-00 dollars/2 litre Sugar/tea= 3 cents per student Water= 1 cent Heat and lighting=2 cents Boarding (most schools insist children bring their own bedding) 40 to a room will cost est. 10 dollars or 25 cents per night ( quite generous consideringlocal rate per square meter at the YMCA) Instruction: one teacher for 200 per month for20 days is 10 dollars per day for 50 students=20 cents per day Other costs incl books etc=15 cents per day per student Total= 89 cents per student per day. Lets discuss this. This means for a total of 10 weeks or 70 day the child uses about 63 dollars per team..what happens to 437 dollars???

gutter poet - 20 January 2014

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