By Feston Malekezo
Details are emerging that not all schools that were targeted to be disinfected using the K100 million allocation from the government have benefitted from the initiative.
The K100 million is part of the controversial K6.2 billion Covid-19 funds which government gave to Department of Disaster Management Affairs (Dodma) in August last year.
Csec Executive Director, Benedicto Kondowe, said they conducted an assessment across the country which showed that majority of schools were not disinfected despite the funds being made available.
“We have representatives across the country who have told us that the fact of the matter is that the disinfection was only done in few schools. Nothing really happened on the ground. These are public resources which have their own avenues of accountability. My view is that these resources must be audited; whether it is engaging an independent auditor, let’s go for it,” he said.
Tchalo Full Primary School in Old Salawe Zone in Rumphi District for example which has over 300 learners is yet to be disinfected.
“Perhaps the delay is because our school is in a hard to reach area. What we do is just to enforce wearing of face masks among teachers and learners, when classes are in session,” said a teacher at the institution who did not want to be named.
But some District Education Managers we have talked to have a different narrative.
Chitipa District Education Manager, Votie Mboweni, said each of the 14 zones of the district was given K50, 000 to purchase chlorine.
“The money was never handled at council level. This was done though the zones . The zones procured Chlorine from at Central Medical Stores in Mzuzu and was shared among the PEAs [primary school education advisors] who engaged HSAs [Health surveillance assistants] for the disinfection.
“It is also worth noting that we managed to disinfect a few CDSSs here (Community Day Secondary Schools]. I do not have the finer details now, but we cannot talk on Wednesday next week,” he said.
He said in total they were given around K700, 000 for the exercise which was done twice—in November and December. Mbowemi’s sentiments were corroborated by Rumphi District Education Manager, Mcphine Mzumara, who said all the 205 schools in his district were disinfected last year.