Rumbidzayi Zinyuke Manicaland Bureau
Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa has encouraged communities in Chimanimani to value educating the girl child and help her realise her potential in the development of the community and the country.
Speaking at the official handover ceremony for a two-classroom block constructed by Zimbabwe Newspapers at Chikukwa Primary School in Chimanimani last week, Minister Mutsvangwa said access to education should be every girl's right and encouraged school children to explore ways they can realise their full potential.
Many areas in Chimanimani, particularly those close to the border with Mozambique, have high incidents of child marriages where children usually leave school soon after primary level to get married.
This has resulted in fewer girls than boys being in schools.
"I am happy there are many girls at this school because girls are also important," said Minister Mutsvangwa.
"I want to urge you not to be afraid of competing with the boys just because you are a girl. We were all created equal, others might be able to realise their potential faster than the rest but everyone can be successful. You need to know how you can take advantage of your talents to make yourself successful."
Chikukwa Primary School has an enrolment of 1 074 learners, of which 569 are girls and 505 are boys. Minister Mutsvangwa said parents should always encourage young girls to pursue their dreams and support the choices they make.
"Everything is possible if you have the determination," she said.
"Nothing can stop children from Chikukwa Primary School from becoming successful people and contributing to the development of your community.
"Your circumstances should not draw you back.
"We want to see doctors, lawyers, nurses and journalists that started off here and grow to magnify the successes of their country.
"We want children that will put Zimbabwe on the world map."
Minister Mutsvangwa said the Ministry of Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services was looking into ensuring that the Chikukwa area had a base station to enhance connectivity that will allow schools in the area to have internet access.
She said this would level the field for children in rural Zimbabwe to have the same quality of education as those in the urban areas.
"The Government is committed to making sure that the playing field is levelled so that the children can use their determination to create better lives for themselves," she said.
Minister Mutsvangwa encouraged the school children to continue observing Covid-19 prevention measures put in place by Government to ensure that they kept receiving education despite the pandemic.