Forum for Democracy and Development FDD president Edith Nawakwi has described as unfortunate the extreme position taken by Sports Minister on the issue of student sponsorship.
Speaking interview Ms. Nawakwi noted that the issue of education is an emergency and should be treated with the agency it deserves and that it was unfortunate for people in government like Mr. Kambwili to be saying that it is not government’s job to educate children in the country.
Ms. Nawakwi wondered who should educate the children if government did not do so as there is no one else who will educate the children apart from the government itself.
She further condemned the ill timing of Mr. Kambwili’s statement which she noted that does not give confidence to the young people in the country especially those striving to improve their lives through acquiring a good education.
“It is very unfortunate that we should have some of our colleagues in government like Mr. Kambwili taking an extreme position and if u recall the demise of Musanka Mukwamba and the timing of Mr Kambwili’s statement its exactly the same time.
“There is no one else who is responsible for educating our children apart from the government, yes there are parents who are able to pay for children and they should be identified and asked to foot the bill.”
Ms. Nawakwi accused the bursaries committee of being corrupt saying we have all been faced with corruption of bursaries committee when a child with 11 points is left out while someone with 27 points is give a bursary.
And the opposition leader says people accusing government of corruption are justified in their accusations as government has continued pumping money in building roads as opposed to the social sectors of country because there is no way of siphoning back the money to private pockets.
“This why we are saying this government is corrupt because there is money for roads and I have been reflecting on why we have so much money for roads.
I believe that if you provide scholarships there is no way of siphoning money back to private pockets but if you give contracts to the Chinese the Minister has already said that the Chinese are busy tempting every Minister with parcels with cash and you can’t do that with bursaries committee you may corrupt some with a small amount and you may be given a bursary but the bulk of the money is going into road construction and building of sky scrapers in the middle of nowhere because this an open tap for ministers siphon money through contracts,” Ms. Nawakwi said.
She added: “this not even an allegation Minister Chikwanda has clearly laid everything bear that his ministers are as corrupt as dirty and I think this should stop. I don’t why they are treating people like this, people are hungry, there is no education, no health and transport is expensive this is really hopeless and I feel so saddened with the demise of my daughter here.”
Ms. Nawakwi was among the scores of mourners who attended the burial of Musanka Mukwamba a first year student at the University of Zambia who committed suicide after she was denied a bursary by the bursaries committee.
Mukwamba is said to have taken poison stunning the university community. The issue of bursaries has taken centre stage after only 2, 600 of the 6, 000 admitted in the first year for the 2014/15 academic year were awarded the privilege.