Education minister outlines government plans on university constructions

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— Education Minister John Phiri says government is committed to construct more public universities in all the 10 provinces of the country to enhance access to tertiary education by learners.

Dr Phiri says education is critical in taking development forward in the country.

The Education Minister said this when he paid a courtesy call on Northern province Minister Freedom Sikazwe at his office in Kasama today.

Dr Phiri assured the people of Northern province that government has plans of constructing a public university in the region.

He however, said due to budgetary constraints, government cannot commence the construction of universities in all provinces at the same time.

And Dr Phiri says early childhood education is vital in increasing the number of children access quality education in the country.

He observed that government has demonstrated its commitment to the education of children by recruiting about 1, 000 pre-school teachers last year.

Dr Phiri said he expects many children to enrol for school places at primary level following the introduction of pre-school education.

And Mr Sikazwe informed Dr Phiri that the province has made significant progress in raising the standard of education as evidenced from the opening of new secondary schools in Mpulungu and Kaputa districts.

Mr Sikazwe however appealed to the Ministry of Education to increase funding towards the on-going school projects so that they can be completed and become useful to learners.

He also welcomed the introduction of local languages as a medium of instruction for primary schools.

He said the move will enhance the understanding of issues by children in lower grades.

Dr Phiri is in Northern province to check on infrastructure in the education sector and also meet staff under his ministry.

He is accompanied by education Deputy Minister Professor Nevelyn Willombe.