The Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) is against plans by most institutions of higher learning to roll out e-learning programmes during the 21-day lockdown.
In a statement, the student representatives’ body said the move is discriminatory as some students have no access to internet facilities. The statement read in part:
It is a very noble idea indeed, however, the vast majority of students have no access to reliable electricity and network connections considering that only 41% of Zimbabwe has access to electricity as stated by the national electricity suppliers (ZETDC) and an even smaller share has access to mobile networks.
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ZINASU also cited the high cost of data as another challenge that will make it difficult for some students to adapt to the e-learning model.
To those with access to both, electricity and mobile networks, the prices of data are way beyond the reach of many, considering that one webinar costs around $100 which is a good fraction of the earnings of a civil servant.