Free primary education, IDs as 2nd Republic strives to leave no one & no place behind

By ZBC Reporter
ZIMBABWE is rising, no one and no place shall be left behind as we march forward towards our vision of a prosperous and empowered upper middle income country by 2030, that was President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s key message which he delivered at Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo as the country marked 42 years of independence from British colonial rule.

President Mnangagwa’s point of departure as he addressed thousands who attended the 42nd independence celebrations, the first to be held outside Harare since independence in line with the second republic’s mantra ‘leaving no one and no place behind’, was that the Second Republic is unwavering in its
commitment to create opportunities in agriculture, mining, manufacturing, tourism, infrastructure, healthcare, education, sciences and Information Communication Technologies, among other sectors.
To ensure both the quantitative and qualitative improvement of education in the country’s institutions, the President said that as from 2023, a phased free education policy is set to be effected.

“Given that the level of development of a nation is dependent on the teaching and adoption of science, technology and innovation; resources will continue to be channelled towards expanding the availability of science related infrastructure throughout all schools in the country. This will be complemented by the
construction of Government Boarding schools in each district. Furthermore, the Schools Financing Policy will see the equalisation of opportunities for a higher quality of education for all learners throughout the country. A phased free primary education system will also be effected from 2023,” said President Mnangagwa.

The President noted that following the undertaking by the Civil Registry Department to issue birth and identity documents, as a listening government, the department will be isssuing the documents for free and remove various bottlenecks which were voiced since the inception of the programme.
“The Civil Registry Department is presently undertaking a countrywide mobile registration exercise to issue birth and identity documents. As a listening Government, the bottlenecks identified since the beginning of the exercise are being attended to, including the removal of fees and stringent information requirements,” revealed President Mnangagwa.

In the agricultural sector the President noted that though the sector has had mixed fortunes caused by climate change, the Pfumvudza/Intwasa programme has however has made it easier for the country to move closer to household and national food security.
“The agricultural sector has had mixed fortunes due to the impact of mid-season drought and recurrent tropical cyclones in some provinces. However, our hopes for an adequate harvest remain high. Overall, the large scale adoption of the Pfumvudza/Intwasa programme by our people throughout the country has had far reaching positive impacts to both household and national food security. Government has made adequate provisions to cater for the grain requirements of vulnerable households and communities,” said President Mnangagwa.
On infrastructure development, President Mnangagwa butressed that a sound infrastructure base is key for sustainable socio-economic development, growth as well as to enhance the country’s role in regional connectivity and integration. He highlighted the scheduled completion of the Gwayi-Shangani dam this year, the progress recorded in the construction of the Kunzvi dam, Tuli Manyange dam in Matabeleland South and Vungu Dam in the Midlands as well as the Marovanyati Dam in Manicaland Province, Muchekerwana Dam and Chivhu Dam in Mashonaland East Provinces that have already been completed.
Other milestone developments in infrastructure development by the 2nd Republic is the Beitbridge-Masvingo-Harare road will is set to be complete by year end, road rehabilitation works underway on the Beitbridge- Bulawayo-Victoria Falls Road, progress on the Nkayi- Bulawayo Road, Zvishavane- Rutenga Road and the
Mberengwa-West Nicholson Road.
President Mnangagwa also noted that the upgrading and modernisation of the Robert Gabriel Mugabe and Joshua Nkomo International Airports are on course, while the upgrade of the Buffalo Range Airport is complete.

Turning to the economy, the President said the country’s economy is projected to grow by 5.5%, leveraging on the peaceful environment, increased production and productivity, infrastructural development, a buoyant mining sector as well as a recovering tourism and hospitality industry.
“The mining sector has immense potential to spur socio- economic development and growth of our economy. Due
to the responsive strategies, we are on course to achieve the target of a US$12 billion mining industry by 2023. It is also pleasing to note that Artisanal and Small to Medium Scale Gold Miners contributed 62% of the total gold deliveries to Fidelity Printers in 2021.
“With regards to Tourism and Hospitality, the increased number of airlines from 3 at the onset of the Second Republic to the current 17 is a testimony of the growth trajectory of the sector as well as the undeniable success of our Engagement and Re- Engagements efforts. The increased tourism investments of over US$142 million in 2021 and the anticipated rebound of the sector this year, will have positive spill offs to other sub-sectors of the economy including the arts, culture and creative industries,” said the President.
President Mnangagwa reminded Zimbabweans to remain alert to the Covid-19 pandemic urging parents and guardians to ensure children over 12 years are vaccinated against the disease.

The President also commended all Zimbabweans in the Diaspora for their patriotism and the role they are playing in the nation urging those who might want to return that they are welcome back home.
“Like all other citizens, those in the Diaspora are indeed welcome to participate and invest in all sectors of the economy as we build the Zimbabwe we all want. In the meantime, I urge our citizens in the Diaspora to remain resolute, in spite of the many challenging circumstances they may face in their host countries. As your President, rest assured that our arms as your fellow countrymen and women remain out-stretched to welcome you back to our free, independent land of opportunities and sovereign home, Zimbabwe,” he said.