Residents demand school construction

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THE Harare Residents Trust (HRT) has taken government to court demanding the construction of a public primary school in Tynwald South by January 2022.

In the application filed by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) with the High Court, HRT cited the City of Harare, Local Government minister July Moyo and Education mister Cain Mathema as respondents.
The trust argued that when Tynwald South was developed into a residential area, the local authority defied a provision to construct a public primary school that services every 600 households.
They want an order for the failure to establish a public primary school in Tynwald South declared a violation of rights of children to education, dignity, administrative justice, equality and non-discrimination.
The residents also seek an order to redirect US$200 000 in Beer Levy to the construction of the public primary school in Tynwald South from stand 16106 in Fountain Blue, Kuwadzana, to an appropriate site within the area.
The court heard the government ought to also designate an appropriate 3,5-hectare site where the school would be built.
“Private schools have been established in the area, but these are not affordable to most families in the area who are low income earners.
“This has left low income families with limited options to enable their young children to access education,” HRT director Precious Shumba said in an affidavit.
“Parents and caregivers are forced to travel lengthy distances to accompany their children to and from schools in neighbouring areas, depriving them of critical working hours and forcing them to pay transport fares for both student and caregiver to and from the schools
“Children have to travel the long distances unaccompanied, putting their lives and safety at risk and families are forced into poverty paying fees for private schools and as a result many children in the area are not able to access school at all.”
Shumba argued that authorities had altered the local plan for Tynwald South and sold out spaces that had been meant for construction of the primary school.
He said through ZLHR they had tried to engage the government to suspend the said developments on that land, but to no avail.

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