With the Education Amendment Bill at the Second Reading stage in the National Assembly, there are still sharp divisions over a part of the proposed law.
The controversy is centred around the clause which bans the expulsion of girls who fall pregnant while in school.
On Wednesday last week in the National Assembly, Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima defended the clause.
However, Pelandaba-Mpopoma legislator, Mr Charles Moyo (MDC Alliance) disagreed. He said:
I have a problem with the second part, that is on the basis of pregnancy. Why Madam Speaker? Our schools must not be turned into maternity homes.
There is no need for those who would have failed on their choice to look for a boyfriend to proceed with schoolwork. A rotten apple spoils the barrel.
I want to say, it will not be good for other pupils as well. So, when a person is impregnated, she ceases to be a pupil or a student, she becomes a mother.
Mind you Madam Speaker, there are complications associated with a person on her first pregnancy. The issues like BP, stress, untimely or early labour pains.
Surely, we must separate those who want to proceed with their schoolwork and those who have chosen to be mothers.
It must be a clear amendment to say, those who would have chosen to have boyfriends, I will reiterate, must be separated from those who want to proceed with their schoolwork because of the peer pressure.
After all, if you happen to have that pregnancy may be a Form 1 if you are not punished and proceeded with schoolwork, it means when you are now at Form 3 or Form 4 level, you again repeat the same mistake.
Surely, we must separate those who want to do their schoolwork properly without any disturbances, without being close to the bad behaviour that will be exhibited by those who would have been impregnated by other people.
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Paul Mavima is a Zimbabwean politician , academic and certified financial planner.He is currently the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education and the Member of Parliament for Gokwe Sengwa Constituency. Read More About Paul Mavima
The National Assembly is one of the organs of the parliament in Zimbabwe. The other being the Senate. The National Assembly in Zimbabwe consists of 270 MPs. Of these, 210 MPs are elected directly in 210 physical constituencies spread across the country. The remaining 60... Read More About National Assembly