Zimbabwe: Chimanimani MP Seeks Govt, Donor Assistance to Rebuild Damaged Schools

21 November 2019

Chimanimani East legislator Cde Joshua Sacco is appealing to the Government and the corporate world to help mobilise resources to rebuild schools damaged by a violent storm last week.

Four schools were badly damaged by heavy rains on Thursday and Saturday, leaving pupils learning in classrooms without roofs.

The affected schools are Kwirire Primary School, Nyambeya Primary School, Chikukwa Primary School and Manase Primary School.

"I am pleading to Government and the corporate world to help mobilise resources for the rebuilding of the schools within the Cyclone Idai affected area. The corporate world and development partners could have an 'adopt a school strategy' where a company may offer for example to rebuild Kwirire Primary School. Outside assistance is welcome to complement Government efforts," said Cde Sacco.

He said some schools had now introduced hot sitting.

"After the classrooms were destroyed, some schools are on hot sitting where some pupils come in the morning and others towards midday," added Cde Sacco.

The pupils were half way into their end of the year examinations when their schools were destroyed by a storm.

The decision by school authorities at Kwirire Primary School to dismiss pupils early on Thursday after sensing danger saved lives.

The Chimanimani Rural District Council-owned school was built in 1981 and has an enrolment of 1 154 pupils.

Pupils were dismissed at 2pm last Thursday after signs of violent rains became apparent.

"After sensing danger we dismissed all pupils at 2pm. Had we not done that this could have been a disaster considering the extent of damage caused here by the storm. On a normal day lessons end at 4pm. Had we dismissed them at 4pm there could have been a disaster here," said Kwirire Primary School head Mr Twoboy Mapoze Sithole.

At Nyambeya Primary School, the storm damaged the school on Saturday night.

Present at the school were only two teachers.

Others teachers had gone away for the weekend. Seven classrooms and a teachers' house were damaged.

The damage left five grades (ECD to Grade 4) without roofs at Nyambeya Primary School.

Five blocks at Kwirire Primary School had their roofs blown off leaving pupils stranded.

Four teachers' houses were also affected.

At Chikukwa Primary School three classrooms were affected by the rains.

Manase Primary Schools had a number of classrooms affected.

Manicaland Provincial Education Director Mr Edward Shumba told The Herald the affected schools will not be closed.

"We are not yet at the stage where we can close the schools," he said.

Mr Shumba has since tasked the Chimanimani district school inspector's office to prepare a report on the extent of the damage caused by the storm.

In March this year Chimanimani was heavily damaged by Cyclone Idai.

The cyclone killed hundreds of people and destroyed infrastructure worth US$1 billion.

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