Government says it will this year focus on completing most unfinished secondary schools that are under construction around the country. Education Minister John Phiri disclosed that government has increased funding for infrastructure development in this year’s budget but noted that most of it will go towards completing these old unfinished schools around the country. He said K500 million which has been allocated in this year’s budget will help a great deal to complete the unfinished schools and open them up for pupils, adding that government has in this vein suspended the construction of new schools this year until the old unfinished schools are completed but stated that it will continue with construction of new schools next year. The Education Minister who was in Kaputa district to check on school infrastructure and sensitize teachers on the new school curriculum said this when he paid a courtesy call on Chief Kaputa of the Tabwa speaking people at his palace yesterday. He said the completion of the schools will give pupils opportunity to access secondary education and skills training according to the new curriculum. Dr Phiri also said t it is also for this reason that government has directed that about 22 basic schools in each province should be converted into secondary schools to create more spaces for grade ten pupils. Earlier, Chief Kaputa had appealed to the minister to complete the construction works of Kaputa boarding secondary school which has currently stalled. The Chief said the delayed completion of the works has had negative effects on pupils who have now failed to proceed to grade ten despite getting good results due to limited spaces at the only secondary school in the district. Chief Kaputa has also requested the Minister to consider upgrading the skills training centre in the district into a trades training institute. Dr Phiri was accompanied by his Deputy, Professor Nevelyn Wilombe and other officials in his Ministry.