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Over 160 School girls in Kalomo rent in shanty compounds
- Updated: July 13, 2012
Over 160 girls at Mwaata high school in Kalomo district are depending on rented houses in shanty compounds of the township due to lack of accommodation at the institution.
The school authority and the Parents Teachers Association (PTA) have described the situation to be a factor contributing to high pregnancy and abortion rate at the school.
And Gender and Development Minister Inonge Wina has called on the communities to work with government to come up with projects that will enhance the advancement of girl child education.
Ms Wina said this in a speech read on her behalf by Southern Province Deputy Permanent Secretary, Alfred Chiingi at the unveiling for the foundation stone for girls hostels ceremony at the school by its
sister partner institution, the Colaiste Chiaran community school of Ireland recently.
Ms Wina said government was happy that the people of Ireland had come to partner with the local people to construct a girl’s hostel that will easy the accommodation burden for the effected going school girls.
The project that is earmarked for completion in nine (9) months time is been undertaken by Mwaata high school and Colaiste Chiaran community school of Ireland at a total cost of K1 billion and once
completed the new hostels will house 140 girls.
The team from Ireland that visited the school recently made a contribution of K50 million towards the project. Mwaata Day High School authorities have in the recent past expressed worry over the increasing rate of pregnancies and abortions being recorded at the learning institution.
School Head teacher, Benson Hachoombe said in an interview that an average of 10 girls fail to report for school at the start of every new term due to either induced abortion or pregnancy.
Mr Hachoombe has since appealed to guardians to assist the school administration to impart good morals in the children to avoid such incidents.
“There is a growing concern especially with girls. The issue of pregnancies and abortions has become common, there is little that the school can do to prevent the vice unless parents are highly involved.
Children are mostly living in rented rooms on their own and as a day school, control is very difficult,” he said.
The school has 1,207 pupils and out of which, 458 are girls and a large number of them are renting apartments in the surrounding areas while a small fraction is staying with relatives. The setup is said to have resulted in undesirable behaviour among some pupils who have involved themselves in illicit practices such as unprotected sex and patronising beer houses-ZANIS