RWAMAGANA – The government has earmarked Rwf3 billion for education in the Eastern province, a Cabinet Minister announced on Tuesday.The Minister of Education, Dr. Charles Murigande, told provincial and other local leaders that the money is for classroom construction.
Only Rwf 10 billion is available for the construction of classrooms country wide, out of Rfw 37 billion which had originally been budgeted for, according to the Minister.
“It was impossible to allocate Rwf 37 billion for the construction of classrooms because of budgetary constraints. We are now working within the limited budget of Rwf 10 billion. That is why we call for parents to chip in,” the Minister said.
A total of 3,722 classrooms are needed to accommodate pupils under the nine -year basic education.
“Since I joined the Ministry, I have been thinking about classrooms. There is no word ‘impossible’ in my vocabulary. We have to get the classes built for our children,” he said, in apparent reference to President Paul Kagame’s earlier remarks.
The Minister, noted that the country needs high literacy levels in order to attain sustainable development.
“The 9 years basic education favours the girl child.This is because many of them would drop out after primary school within the previous system.
Under the new programme such anomalies will be checked,” he added.
Meanwhile, the area governor Dr. Ephraim Kabayija has asked local leaders to speed up construction of classrooms and involve parents in the process.
“No room for excuses, no more meetings. Engage and mobilise the people to help you construct the schools.
I want us to have the schools ready by November,” Kabayija said.
“Let no parent brush you off, they must take part in the implementation of universal education. It is an obligation.”
He was meeting local leaders who had gathered in Rwamagana to meet the Cabinet Minister who had visited the province on the same day.
The governor’s remarks followed reports by district leaders which indicated that the construction of classrooms is still at the foundation level.
Present were Agriculture Minister Dr. Agnes Kalibata, and Minister of Local government, Christophe Bazivamo.