Chinotimba causes Parly stir

HARARE - Controversial Buhera South legislator Joseph Chinotimba has thumped his nose at people opposed to the national pledge insisting they should withdraw their children from schools implementing the curriculum if they are not happy with this government initiative. 

The national pledge is a proposed new government curriculum for primary and secondary schools, compelling children to salute the national flag and recite a pledge of patriotism, in a move which opposition parties have since described as “fascist”.

Primary and Secondary Education minister Lazarus Dokora is set to launch the national pledge on May 3, 2016 in all schools nationwide along with a new curriculum which will consist of heritage patriotism subjects.

However, Chinotimba’s statement comes following a heated exchange during Wednesday’s National Assembly session where MDC MP for Binga Constituency Prince Dubeko Sibanda enquired on the basis of introducing such a curriculum.

“Minister, you did very well,” an excited Chinotimba said.

“Those that are not interested should remove their children from school and let our children continue learning,” he said.

But Sibanda raised fears that the national pledge could be used by any political party to manipulate schoolchildren.

While several countries around the world have national pledges, which are oaths of allegiance, opposition parties are wary of Zanu PF’s agenda — pointing at the country’s controversial national youth service where graduates have often become unthinking storm troopers for the governing party.

Deputy Primary and Secondary Education minister Paul Mavima defended the curriculum, dismissing Sibanda’s claims as regressive.

“The national pledge is part of the heritage studies that the new curriculum is going to introduce,” Mavima said.

“It is designed to build on the commitment that our learners have to their country. It is not unique to Zimbabwe.

“Many countries have similar pledges and in some countries even legislators, before they start their business, start with a pledge to their country. It is designed to build on patriotism and commitment to one’s country that is the basis of the new national pledge.”

Mavima said the new curriculum had been clearly thought out after a national consensus from all stakeholders including the Constitution.

“The second basis of that consensus is that the new curriculum of which the national pledge is a part to, was done after consultations that took place at every school in this country,” Mavima said to loud interjections from some legislators.

“That consultation at the schools involved parents and all stakeholders. That consultation also took place with members of this House at various levels.

“When we did the initial outreach, we invited members to make contributions. After that, when we did the draft, we also asked members to make a contribution. So, there is no question about whether there was national consensus or not. We made sure that there was consultation and national consensus.”

Comments (12)

"many countries"? Which ones make up that many? Chinotimba is just an idiyat who is a mere praise singer and a clown. This country will not be able to compete with the brightest and best if its legislature and leadership are people of the calibre of Chinotimba. He should really be selling tomatoes by the side of the road somewhere or tending cattle this guy.

Galore 123 - 8 April 2016

It is a shame that people of Buhera chose such a dull person who does not care about talking about jobs but saluting flags which we no do not bring food in our houses . People of Buhera this is a very big lesson next election never vote for slow thinkers remove this guy he is a security guard by experience and not parliamentarian material he is leading your area to no where .Never vote for mazanga .

Diibulaanyika - 8 April 2016

this idea comes from pple who spent all of their time doing nothing in their spacious offices in gvt complexes. chigwedere once proposed for schools to have one school uniform! and another wanted to change grp A' school names and rename them to the likes of chaminuka & kaguwi! we are in a circus and these scarecrows are giving us a poorly rehearsed script!

SaManyika Chaiye - 8 April 2016

If the allegiance is as truthful as you make it sound, suggestion going forward is to now remove President R Mugabe and all future presidents' faces from offices, instead put the Zim flag therein. Lets do away with allegiance to a person but country Zimbabwe!

nyaraiwo - 8 April 2016

Zanu pf government's priorities and policies are deliberately f*** up. The schools of this country needs , clean water, material resources, technology upgrades, proper shelter, variety of sports codes and staff support. We have morale down and out teachers, bare feet, hungry school kids and winter is coming and zanu pf government comes up with this crap. By the way their kids are abroad. This country will require an ocean size detergent to clean up zanu pf's mess.

X-MAN IV - 8 April 2016

Some ministers are trying to justify their stay in government by coming up with these ill-advised "ideas". That a grown up man can mute such nonsense (with the state of our education system) speaks volumes of the calibre of leadership we have in this country. This is heartless at best considering their kids are mostly in foreign schools. How someone think they know better and drop these mad experiments on poor Zimbabweans without any consultation is the worst kind of elitism that is plagueing this country.

RR - 9 April 2016

and the opposition put up some baby fight and let Zanu pf does what it wants. why do we have the likes of malema in our opposition parties who are brave to take on even the president?

prof - 9 April 2016

Exactly what our education system needs! This will motivate our teachers and make their jobs worthwhile. In fact, it will increase our pass rates in schools and help us develop more learned graduates like Cde Chinotimba. Nyatsoteerera unzwe kutonga! Kkkkkkk

Muoni - 12 April 2016

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