Payment for suppliers and shortage of desks irk JPM

19Jan 2021
By Guardian Reporter
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Payment for suppliers and shortage of desks irk JPM

​​​​​​​PRESIDENT John Magufuli yesterday directed authorities in Ubungo District in the city of Dar es Salaam to ensure no pupil sits on the floor due to a shortage of desks.

​​​​​​​PRESIDENT John Magufuli.

The president expressed concerned that there are many pupils at King’ongo primary school in Saranga Ward in the district who lessons while seated on the floor, saying this is discomfort for the pupils and their teachers.

 He referred to that situation in remarks made in Kagera Region when inaugurating the revamped Ihungo Secondary School, extensively damaged during an earthquake in September 2016, a 5.9 tremor on the Richter scale, whereupon Ihungo students were shifted to other schools.

Funding for the rebuilding of Ihungo Secondary School was boosted by the UKAid/DFID education programme, he said.

Dr Magufuli used the platform to challenge the regional and district top officials to ensure proper expenditure of public funds, in particular funds allocated for specific development projects.

“Leaders must ensure proper expenditure of funds. We are today witnessing inauguration of this school because the project was well managed.

The 6bn/- provided by the UK government and 5bn/- from state coffers was properly spent,” he said, underlining the motto of value for money in each project.

 King’ongo Primary School infrastructure is dilapidated, but authorities are not taking action to rebuild or repair the facilities, he admitted, commending the person who recorded a video showing pupils seated on the floor, posted to some social media networks.

He ordered city and regional officials to immediately construct new classrooms and purchase desks, pointing a finger of accusation to district officials at Ubungo, as well as its legislator Prof Kitila Mkumbo for not taking measures to improve the school’s infrastructures.

“I want all the classes to be constructed before I come to the city,” he ordered, vowing to personally inspect the school.

He said it wasn’t fair for pupils to continue learning while seated on the floor whereas the government has appointed district officials and the minister to see to it that such problems are solved.

President Magufuli told the gathering that he decided to fire the Geita District Executive Director over misuse of funds.  The sacked DED was using monies allocated for development projects to purchase vehicles.

The president laid a foundation stone for the construction of a vocational educational center in Kagera Region, expressing gratitude to the Chinese government for funding the construction of the VETA college and the UK for contributing to the refurbishment of Ihungo Secondary School.

The partnership has shown the friendship and good relations that exist between Tanzania and those countries, he stated, explaining that the construction of the college helps to increase the number of VETA colleges, which in recent years rose from 672 centres in 2015 to 712 last year, with 33 colleges are under construction.

He directed the Tanzania National Roads Agency (TanRoads to build a 10 km tarmac road linking VETA College to the main road, instructing the Minister of State in the President’s Office (Regional Administration and Local Governments), Selemani Jafo to build  a one kilometer tarmac road from the TanRoads stretch to Ihungo Secondary School.

Apart from rebuilding the school, the government is building 905 new primary schools, 332 secondary schools, 253 dormitories, 227 laboratories and providing a grant of1.1trn/ - to fund free education from primary to secondary school countrywide, he stated

Dr Magufuli similarly set seven days for the Tanzania Building Agency (TBA) to pay suppliers of building materials for rebuilding the school, after he was informed that some of them face bankruptcy for lack of payment.

Construction work had increased primary school enrollment from 8,298,282 in 2015 to 10,938,159 pupils while raising the pass rate from 57 percent to 82.68 percent, he stated

Prof. Joyce Ndalichako, the minister for Education, Science and Technology praised the president for giving priority to education, including his instructions to build technical colleges nationwide and in rehabilitating Ihungo Secondary School immediately after it was wrecked by an earthquake.

The renovation has increased the capacity of the school from 640 students earlier to 1,152 students, she stated.

In the past five years, 84 out of 89 schools were renovated and five were still being renovated, while in the next five years the government intends to build one girls' secondary school in each region with capacity for 1,000 students.

Minister Jafo said that the ministry shall work hard to ensure that all the government’s objectives are attained, saying that being appointed was a mandate to ensure that every Tanzanian child has access to quality education.

The Regional Commissioner, Brigadier General Marco Gaguti said that rebuilding the school took up 10.9bn/- and in its new version it is one of the best schools in the country.

“We have started to witness outcomes of the huge investment in the education sector, as chronic truancy has gone down by three percent. As of now children are attending school, enrolment has increased by 30 percent, similarly improving performance in class and in national examinations,” he said.

Education performance in the region has attained 88.8 percent for primary schools and 90 percent in secondary schools compared to the total targeted section of the population, the RC added. Read More...

Top Stories