Lilongwe based multinational tobacco buying and processing company, Alliance One Tobacco Malawi Limited has spent over K83 million constructing six classrooms at Kachewele primary school in Lilongwe’s north-west.
Speaking during the handover ceremony held at the school’s campus last Friday, Alliance One Tobacco Malawi Corporate Affairs Officer Ben Kawonga said his company decided to construct the six classrooms at Kachewele primary school as one way of fulfilling its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program in the country.
“As a company we decided to construct the new classroom-blocks at this school as part of our Corporate Social Responsibility program here in Malawi by ensuring that pupils are learning in a conducive environment suiting the international education standards,” said Kawonga.
He added that his company also decided to construct the new classroom-blocks after realising that the school is based in one of the areas where majority of people are smallholder farmers who grow tobacco which the company buys every year including those from its contracted tobacco growers.
According to Kawonga, for so many years his company has been complimenting government’s efforts in improving the living standards of people in the country particularly in the sectors of education, water and sanitation, environment, health and social-welfare among others.
He therefore urged parents in the area to avoid using children as a source of labour in tobacco farms, but instead they should send them to the newly constructed school so that they can become responsible future citizens for this nation, adding that this is what Alliance One International advocates in every country it is operating globally.
In his remarks, Primary School Education Advisor (PEA) for Malembo Zone Hyford Chateka commended Alliance One Tobacco Malawi for constructing the new classroom-blocks at the school.
According to Chateka the school started in 2017 and had no classroom-blocks, a situation which forced pupils to learn in make-shift classes made of grass.
Chateka disclosed that previously pupils who reached standard six were forced to walk a distance of more than seven kilometres to learn at Kasendwe and Kanthungo full primary schools because Kachewele only had standards one to four.
“Let me commend Alliance One for constructing these new classroom blocks as well as an administration office here at Kachewele school which has enabled pupils who reach standard five up to eight to start learning at this same campus.
“Previously pupils who reach standard five were forced to walk a long distance to learn at Kasendwe and Kanthungo schools which are located far away from here”, said Chateka.
He disclosed that most children in the area were forced to drop out of school upon reaching standard five because they could not walk a distance of more than seven kilometres to learn in the other primary schools which have full classes.
According to the school’s Head teacher, Atwell Jowampingo, construction of the new classroom-blocks have helped to increase the school’s enrolment from 425 during the previous academic year to over 500 during the current school term. Apart from constructing the six classrooms, the company has also constructed the administration office and dug a borehole.
Apart from Kachewele primary school, Alliance One Tobacco has also renovated various primary schools in Lilongwe city, Dowa and Ntchisi districts which has so far cost the Lilongwe based tobacco buying company over MK153 million.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :