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APP wants more resources for education

2022-01-21  John Muyamba

APP wants more resources for education

RUNDU - The All People’s Party is concerned about inadequate budgetary allocations to schools, and calls on government to continue prioritising education.

APP secretary general (SG) Vinsent Kanyetu said at a press conference held at Rundu on Wednesday that the current allocation is unable to meet schools’ developmental obligations and has put many public schools in a precarious situation, forcing principals to rely on parental contributions to meet such obligations. 

He observed that the beginning of the academic year can bring anxiety to some parents who have to bear the brunt of forking out fees to ensure that their children are not denied an education.

“This is a challenge to many of our community members already struggling to support their families under the current economic environment,’’ Kanyetu stated. 

‘’We thus call on government to review the current allocation to enable sufficient support to schools without exerting undue pressure on parents and guardians,’’ he added.

Kanyetu said the APP has noted with concern that some pertinent issues seem to have become the norm, which requires serious intervention from Government to ensure that every Namibian child is accorded quality education. 

‘’We have noted that some learners are sent back if they are unable to pay such contributions. This is a worrisome trend that can deny these children their constitutional right to education. No child should be denied such rights to education in a free and independent Namibia”, he continued.

‘’It is the prerogative of Government to ensure adequate resources allocations to enable all Namibian children to access education without discrimination,’’ he said.

Last week, the National African Students’ Association (NASA) said free education was just a thing on paper as parents are still being required to attend to many aspects of their children’s education at public schools.

NASA said parents are being forced to pay school fees as schools don’t get funds from the ministry on time, and thus demanded that the ministry of education pays the universal primary education (UPE) funds early in the year to prevent schools from demanding fees and stationery from parents, who sometimes have nothing to offer. 

UPE replaced the school development funds.

However, the ministry of education this week said it’s every parent’s obligation to contribute towards their child’s education.

“For the sake of dignity and pride in investing in their child’s education, every parent is welcome to contribute in monetary terms, or offer any services. We are all taxpayers, and taxpayers’ money is being used to invest in infrastructure. We do not ask parents to pay for water and electricity. It’s government paying for it, and that’s why we are so strict about the use and wastage of water at schools and hostels,” noted education executive director Sanet Steenkamp earlier this week.

She added that Government deposited N$152 million into school accounts, but it is not enough for schools. 

“Education’s major cost drivers are salaries, and the other is the catering services for government-registered hostels,’’ Steenkamp said. 

2022-01-21  John Muyamba

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