5 million Malawians do not know how to read and write, says education minister

Minister of Education, Science and Technology, Emmanuel Fabiano has expressed concern that over five million people out of the population of 17 million do not know how to read snd write.

Kaliati and Dr. Fabiano, consulting each other during the function
Kaliati and Dr. Fabiano, consulting each other during the function

Malawi on Thursday joined the rest of the world in commemorating International Literacy Day under the theme ‘Reading the past, writing the future’ with goal of creating awareness on the importance of education.

Speaking during the commemoration ceremony which was held at Champiti Primary School ground in the area of Traditional Authority Champiti, Fabiano  appealed to illiterate adults to start attending adult literacy classes for the development of their households and become productive citizens of the country.

“This is of great concern nd worry to the government and all of us. As government, we established the literacy classes to help those with high levels of illiteracy,” he said.

He said although women patronise such classes, men continue to shun the classes and said there should be incentives that should attract illiterate men attend the classes.

“Illiterate people cannot actively participate in development initiatives at all levels, therefore adult literacy programme need to be supported and utilized, if we have to increase the number of literate people,” he said.

“Government’s efforts can only be successful if all stake holders join together in creating awareness on the need for education, encouraging children to go to school and providing education services,” he said.

Earlier, Minister of Civic Education, Culture and Community Development, Patricia Kaliati said illiterate people are easily abused, cannot defend their rights and usually are economically challenged.

“Most people who are illiterate in the country are women and that is why women are always marginalized in all spheres of development starting from household level,” said Kaliati.

According to United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), there are 758 million adults who cannot read or write and two thirds of them are women.

International Literacy Day was set aside by UNESCO in 1966 and is commemorated on September 8 annually.

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Winston Msowoya
Winston Msowoya
5 years ago

REALLY,5million people in Malawi after 52 years of independence can not read and write,are our national leaders care about their voters or care about their fortunes?The leaders are happy about that because it is easy to manipulate illiterates as we can see every day,but this is a venomous political and economic disaster for the nation.SHAME!!!

5 years ago

All this is because of cashgate. Government needs to be ambitious in the following ways if we are are to develop:

1. Set itself a target for a zero illiteracy rate by 2030.
2. Set itself to quadruple the currents intake at higher education qualifications.
3. Eliminate quota based selection replacing it with meritoriousness. But ensure that all secondary schools in Lowe shire, Karonga, Nkhatabay Salina and other low lying areas are air-conditioned to provide good learning and teaching environment.

This can only happen if cashgate is history by arresting corrupt officials immediately.

You delay, development stalls!

5 years ago

All adults in the north can read. No one is illiterate.

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