“If you just sit and work hard, you will be here for just five years, but if you misuse this time you will regret for 75 years” was the advice to the girls of Niko Girls Technical School when FDD president Edith Nawakwi visited the school during her tour of duty of Namwala district.
And the FDD leader has observed that the late president Levy Mwanawasa’s initiative of opening schools for girls across the country will go to waste if schools were not fully equipped.
Addressing pupils at the school Ms Nawakwi advised the girls to concentrate on their education as the opportunity they have would only come once in their lifetime.
She said girls were not in any way different from boys and that they should not be discouraged from taking up subjects which are perceived to be difficult and taken up by boys.
“Maths is the easiest subject, Science is the easiest subject, if you can fry an egg then you can get 100 percent in maths. There is this myth that maths and science subjects are difficult and therefore should be for boys. No! Any one can be good in these subjects all you need is to prepare,read and these subjects will be easy for you,” said Ms. Nawakwi said.
“You have a good opportunity of going to a beautiful school that we the adults did not have and I want you to use this opportunity to move the country forward, I want you to move the country to a level that we have never been,” she said.
Ms. Nawakwi also advised the pupils to avoid engaging in illicit behavior as doing so would only destroy their lives.
“We have a problem with a girl child, you are at an age which very is dangerous. Some of you have graduated into adult hood and a number of you especially my children in grade 8 you are now experiencing adolescence. You need support from your elder sisters. This the age were you can lose yourself, I have seen some girls at the age of 13 become mothers.”
“Keep away from those activities because the beautiful and handsome men are either old age or they are not yet born because if a young man is of your age then they don’t have your aptitude, boys grow slower than girls so if you are 13 you are in a different world.”
She added ” It’s better to choose your friends, the reason I’m where I am is because I chose my friends well and friends must be smarter than me because I want to learn something from them.”
She continued by encouraging the girls to work extra hard and ensure that their future is bright adding that the girls should have ambitions and ensure that their goals are realized.
“I come from an extremely disadvantaged background but said to myself that before I die I want to wear a Rolex watch, that I drive a V8 and I have managed to do those things.”
And the opposition leader has called on government to ensure that schools are equipped with teaching materials.
She said it was not enough to build schools which were just walls without requisite teaching materials something she observed was making teachers underperform.
They don’t have a functioning lab because there is no equipment, there are no text books for teachers. You can’t expect a school built to this standard without teaching aid in terms of text books.
It may not even take as much as it has taken to build this school to equip the school and these are the issues I raise which people are not comfortable hearing.
The opposition leader added that late president Mwanawasa’s dream of increasing the number of girls accessing secondary school education will go down the drain if government does not ensure that schools are equipped.