GOVERNMENT will build at least 22 houses in all the 115 secondary schools being constructed countrywide, Parliament heard on Tuesday.
Minister of General Education Denis Wanchinga said Government, in line with its quest to provide decent accommodation for teachers, will build between 20 and 22 houses at all the 115 secondary schools being built countrywide.
He said this in Parliament on Tuesday during the questions for oral-answer session.
Dr Wanchinga was responding to Mkaika member of Parliament (MP) Peter Phiri, who wanted to know how many teachers’ houses are earmarked for construction in Mkaika constituency this year.
Mr Phiri also wanted to find out how many schools will benefit from the project, the names of the schools, and the total cost of the project.
Before responding to the questions, Dr Wanchinga first presented a comprehensive update on the status of teachers’ accommodation.
He said there are 19,253 permanent teachers’ houses in primary schools, 5,534 temporary ones in primary schools and 2,503 teacher’s houses which are incomplete.
Dr Wanchinga said at secondary level, there are 7,104 permanent teachers’ houses, 253 temporary, while 296 are incompleted.
He also gave a detailed distribution of teacher’s houses which indicated that Southern Province has the highest number at 3,685, while Western Province has the lowest at 1,081.
And responding to Mr Phiri, Dr Wanchinga said Government has no plans of building teachers’ houses in Mkaika in 2017.
“As at now, Government has no intentions of building teachers’ houses in Mkaika, the Ministry [of General Education] is currently preoccupied under the 2017 budget to attend to matters that relate to the completion of structures which are already under construction such as the repair of blown-off roofs, and schools that are in dire need of various facilities such as desks,” he said.
Dr Wanchinga urged MPs to engage their communities through Constituency Development Fund to build teachers’ houses to address teacher’s accommodation challenges.
He also appealed to the Parents and Teachers Associations to also consider building houses which they can rent out to teachers’ and make an income.
And Dr Wanchinga said Zambia has a total of 103,000 primary school teachers in the country against a total number of 24,000 teachers’ houses.
He said this in response to Chifubu MP Frank Ng’ambi who wanted to find out the housing deficit among primary school teachers.