WALVIS BAY – Minister of Education, Arts and Culture Katrina Hanse-Himarwa says Namibians who see children being taught under trees and in open spaces should rather divert their energy towards assisting such children, instead of taking pictures to mock them on social media.
Hanse-Himarwa was speaking at the official handover of six newly built classrooms and two renovated laboratories at Kuisebmond Primary, Naraville Primary and Kuisebmond Secondary School here in Walvis Bay. The donation was made possible by the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) Walvis Bay branch totalling N$1.4 million under the ministry’s flagship programme, Friends of Education in Namibia Special Initiative (FENSI).
Hanse-Himarwa says Namibians shamelessly mock the situation instead of seeing an opportunity to assist government in its quest to provide a dignified environment for all Namibian children. “It’s not my children that you are mocking, but it’s the Namibian child that you are mocking and it is a disgrace to do so. Let us rather dignify our children instead of mocking them. Provision of education and the construction of classrooms should not only be seen as a government responsibility but a collective effort between all stakeholders, including the private sector and parents,” she says.
Lack of classrooms at some schools in the country is not an intentional situation but is due to the growing Namibian population. “We are all aware that with the influx in urban areas learner enrolment increases annually and there is a need to provide adequate educational infrastructure to create a conducive learning environment for the Namibian child,” she explains.
She adds that it is indeed a collective responsibility and that education is a societal responsibility rather than solely resting on government alone.
Chairperson of NCCI, Johny Doeseb says education remains a top priority as an educated nation will eventually lead to economic transformation. “We realise that the need for classrooms is of utmost importance if we want to add value to Vision 2030, the Harambee Prosperity Plan among others. However, it all starts with education, hence NCCI, Walvis Bay branch took it upon ourselves to assist with the construction of the classrooms,” he says.
NCCI also availed N$20 000 to the ministry, which will be awarded to the top Grade 12 and three Grade 10 performers in 2019. The top Grade 12 learner will receive N$11 000 to register at a Namibian tertiary institution of their choice and three Grade 10 top learners will each get N$3 000 .