(Image, left to right:ZOCS Executive Director, Mrs Cleopatra Muma, Contractor Partner Mr Ebyshy Chinkoyo, Assistant Director Standards in the Ministry of Education, Mr James Chomba and Airtel Managing Director Mr Apoorva Mehrotra breaking the ground to symbolize the start of the building of a 1 x 3 classroom block and ablution block at Mwalubemba Community School in Chongwe Rural.)
In a bid to support Governments’ stance of making education accessible to all Zambian children through its Free Education Policy, Airtel Networks Zambia Plc in partnership with the Zambia Open Community Schools (ZOCS) yesterday symbolically broke ground to signal the start of the construction of a 1 x 3 Classroom block and ablution block for Mwalubemba Community School in rural Chongwe.
Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony, Ministry of General Education Permanent Secretary Mr. Joel Kamoko said the New Dawn Government was glad to note that through the financial support from Airtel Zambia and working in partnership with the Zambia Open Community Schools (ZOCS), the construction project of a classroom block as well as an ablution block was beginning.
Mr. Kamoko who was represented by Assistant Director – Standards in the Ministry of Education, Mr. James Chomba, added that the Ministry took pride in working and cooperating with civil society organizations such as ZOCS as they helpedcomplement Government efforts in improving the quality of education across the country.
“As you are aware, Government on its own cannot reach out to every child in all corners of Zambia to ensure that they access quality education due to limited resources. Additionally, we all know that community schools are in dire need of more classrooms, more desks and chairs, and structurally sound buildings. Therefore, this groundbreaking ceremony gives us great joy to see the real Public Private Partnerships in action. Thank you, Airtel.” Mr. Kamoko said.
Speaking at the same event, Airtel’s Managing Director, Mr. Apoorva Mehrotra said it was good to come back to the school he had visited 6 months prior to see the start of the building of a 1 x 3 classroom block and ablution block for the over 800 children.
“We need to strengthen the hand of the Government by helping to increase and expanding infrastructure to allow more children access quality education. I am so happy and delighted to be here to witness the start of this project which not only includes a classroom block and ablution block but also a playpark which we feel is important for the children because every child needs a balance between study and play,” Mr. Mehrotra said.
ZOCS Executive Director Mrs. Cleopatra Muma said that the groundbreaking ceremony was a significant activity which in its very essence gave hope to the community in that development was beginning in the area to help secure the wellbeing of the learners to access good quality education.
“ZOCS is committed to ensuring that children in Community Schools are taken care of as such, partnerships such as the one we have with Airtel Zambia is valued. As an organization, we will continue to advocate for support on behalf of Community Schools until every child has access to quality education and a conducive learning environment,” Mrs. Muma said.
Also in attendance was the Chongwe District Commissioner, Dr. Evans Lupiya and Headwoman Mwalubemba.
Source: Airtel Zambia