PRESIDENT Jakaya Kikwete has advised students at all levels of education to envisage their careers while pursuing studies and refuse to be overwhelmed by temptations which could wreck future achievements.
The president was addressing the community of WAMA Nakayama Secondary School in Rufiji District, Coast Region, during an event lined up to mark the first graduation ceremony at the weekend. A total of 67 girls received their School Leaving Certificates.
President Kikwete said that a clear focus among students could function as motivation for the fulfilment of educational objectives. "Determination in learning cannot be overstated. Each student needs to visualise a brighter future. Competence in professionalism should be the focus.
A medical doctor, a school teacher, a lawyer, an engineer, an extension officer and all others must be highly skilled. "Seriousness in learning is the basis of achievement. You must get there.
Yes, you can," the president said. WAMA Nakayama is a special secondary school in the region. The school receives girls from all regions in Tanzania.
These are girls who, perhaps, lost hope in life after losing their parents due to various causes and consequently, leaving them in difficult conditions.
However, the Women and Development Fraternity (WAMA) currently under the leadership of the First Lady, Mama Salma Kikwete, reached out for them in a quest to provide them free education and other basic needs.
The school coined its name after a generous Japanese donor, Hayao Nakayama, became the first person to donate 100 million Japanese yen (one million US dollar) for construction of the school.
The generous donation, therefore, prompted the name of the school, Wama Nakayama. Farida Hemedi (17) emerged the best student in English, History and Commerce. She received presents including 300,000/- in cash.
She said the secret behind her success was diligence as she wanted to become an accountant. She therefore took seriously the time spent in group discussions and private studies at night.
Other students who logged outstanding performance included Fatuma Juma (Basic Mathematica and Civics), Amina Issa (Biology), Olivia Mathias (Physics and Kikswahili) and Diana Francis (Chemistry). Hard working teachers were equally rewarded as motivation for a job well done.
The Japanese Ambassador to Tanzania, Mr Masaki Okada, was in attendance. He underlined the need for the world to open more learning opportunities for women.
He recalled the famous expression by the former leader of China, Mao Tsetung, who said that 'women carry half of the skies,' meaning the role of women in development was immense. Giving a vote of thanks to the donor community, both local and international, Mama Salma described the graduation ceremony as a historic and inspiring event.
"I feel quite uneasy to say goodbye to my children whom I love so much. We started this school together in February, 2010. Eighty girls were registered as Form One students. "It hurts to learn that five of our students became pregnant during annual vacation periods as they visited relatives.
Girls must be protected and should be given chance to build a career," Mama Salma appealed. The school Headmistress, Ms Tuma Mensa, said that the academic performance of the school had been remarkable. The school had taken the lead in the district judging from both Form Two and Form Four Mock examination results.
"There are 332 students (girls only) and the school is well furnished with a science subject laboratory, a computer room, water supply, dormitories, accommodation for the teaching staff and solar power.
Through the support of WAMA more classrooms and dormitories will be constructed for Form Five and Six students. A good relationship with the community has been enjoyable," Mensa explained.
One of the villagers, Masoud Bakari (38), said that construction of the school in the area was highly appreciated. He added that: "This place (Nyamisati Village in Rufiji District had almost been forgotten.