SADC Education Ministers Urged on Investment

Kondowe Kondowe - Picture: Luka Beston

Civil Society Education Coalition in Malawi (CSEC) and Southern Africa Moderator for Africa Network Campaign on Education for All (ANCEFA) have challenged education ministers in the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) region to ensure that about 50 million children have the right to education and cover the 17 million teachers deficit.

CSEC Chairperson Dr. Limbani Nsapato has told Zodiak Online on Thursday that the governments must allocate enough resources to the education sector, observing that about half of the African states are failing to meet the 15 percent budget funding obligation.

Dr. Nsapato has thus called on the SADC education ministers to discuss this at the Regional and Continental Education Strategy meeting currently underway in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

He has further urged the ministers to negotiate with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to remove credit conditions restricting countries from employing more teachers for fear of blotting the wage bill, observing that "this is affecting quality education in the region."

"African countries need to invest enough resources towards inclusive, equitable education for marginalised children and those affected by emergencies," he said.

Ministry of Education spokesperson, Mphatso Nkuonera says he needed time to consult before commenting on the plea.

But, in the 2023/24 fiscal year, Malawi has met the obligation by allocating K603 billion towards education and skills development representing a 15.6 percent of the total budget despite failing to employ more teachers currently waiting idle amid a gap in pupil-teacher ratio.

For instance, several cohorts of teachers under the Initial Primary Teacher Education (IPTE) have complained of unemployment in the country.

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