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Education’s budget allocation not enough – ZPP

by BustopTV

By Own Correspondent

Funds availed towards the Education sector by government barely cover the ministry’s needs, the Zimbabwe Peace Project (ZPP) January report has highlighted.

In his 2020 budget presentation, Finance minister, Mthuli Ncube put ZWL$8.5 billion towards the country’s education but the money is being eroded by inflation.

The money is not enough to cater for teachers, develop infrastructure thereby putting strain on pupils guardians who now have to pay exorbitant school levies.

“Although the Ministry of Education received one of the highest budgetary allocations in the budget announced by the Minister of Finance and Economic Development in November 2019, at 16.8% of the total budget, the allocation is not enough to cater for all the Ministry’s needs and continues to be eroded by inflation. Schools are increasingly dependent on school levies to operate; which is an exorbitant cost passed on to parents and guardians.”

According to the monthly monitoring report, the move by schools to turn away students for failure to pay their fees will cause an increase in the number of school drop outs.

Monitors took note of an incident at Sumbe Secondary School in Gumunyu, Gokwe that was barring pupils who did not pay their tuition from attending classes. The students were again expected to have new books and pay ZWL$200 levy.

ZPP went onto urge government to pay the fees for students under its Basic Education Assistance Module (BEAM).

“ZPP received reports of several schools across the country who have been turning away learners from school owing to non- payment of fees and levies. This is likely to result in an increase in the rate of school drop outs, making girls even more vulnerable.

The government should speedily put in place measures that protect the right to education; lest accessing this right becomes a privilege for a few. The government should also ensure that all arrears owed to schools under the Basic Education Assistance Module (BEAM) are paid as this will assist alleviate financial
pressure from schools.”

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