The Civil Society Education Coalition [CSEC] has warned Government that should the meeting slated for Thursday, 8th April 2021 between Government Negotiating Team and the Teachers Union of Malawi [TUM] not yield the positive result, it will from next week convene regional meetings in the North, Centre and South with parents, students and all Malawians of goodwill to plan for national wide demonstrations.
CSEC is expressing the furtherance of its mandate, anticipate that both parties, Government and TUM will resolve the end of the Stay-Away latest by Friday 9th April, 2021 placing the best interest of the child as key to all decisions that affect them.
The organization says it will not hesitate to use all other lawful means as its disposal as guaranteed under the laws of Malawi in defense of the interests of the students, saying this includes seeking remedies from the courts as circumstances might dictate.
In a statement dated 7th April, 2021 signed by its Executive Director, Benedicto Kondowe and Board Chairperson, Mrs. Jennipher Mkandawire, CSEC has expressed its deep concerns over the gross failure by Government to resolve the ongoing Stay Away.
…”We have noted with regret that the recent numerous engagements between Government and its Agencies and TUM have not yielded any positive results to avert the prospective dire consequences of the Stay Away…,’’ reads part of the statement.
CSEC is reminding Government that it has the constitutional obligations to promote, protect and fulfill the right to education, and failure to do so will be abdication of this noble duty Section 25 of the constitution of Malawi which entitles everyone to education.
The organization is imploring Government once again to rise up to the occasion to provide concrete direction of resolving the stand-off to facilitate continuity of teaching and learning sharing the view by Jelani Cobb that,…”In the ideology of school closure, though, the lines of responsibility-of blame, really-run inward.’’
It says recognizing the harm that the continued Stay Away would cause to the education sector, CSEC is urging Government that it is better late than to do nothing about the plight of the country’s students in the public schools, saying rejecting actions by the two parties, Government and TUM will see education crumble in their face without responsibility.
By Vincent Gunde