Chaponda asks UN body for Malawi youth loans

Malawi’s Minister of Education Science and Technology, George Chaponda has asked UNESCO to scale up the government’s MK 3 bllion Youth Enterprise Development Fund (Yedef), saying a generation of untrained youth is susceptible to hatred and violence.

“it is important to realize that  there should be an effective generation of employment or engagement of the trained youth into activities that will use their skills to fend for their needs. Otherwise idle youths are like a landmine, which will accidentally explode on innocent people,” Chaponda said.

But Yedef has mainly benefited the infamous DPP Youth cadets, especially those in the Mulhako wa Alhomwe grouping at the expense of all youths in Malawi.

Chaponda: Need to review school curricula

Chaponda, unashamedly, made the appeal on Thursday in Paris, France during the Leaders’ Forum of the 36 Session of the UNESCO Conference, which will run from 25th October to 10 November, 2011.

The theme of the Forum is “Building a Culture of Peace for Sustainable Development.”

Chaponda indicated the need for review of school curricula to promote knowledge, skills, attitudes and values saying these were vital in bringing about behavioral change

He further observed  the need to establish best practices from the various cultures and education systems in the UNESCO member states, which could then be used as a reference material for reviewing the curriculum.

“I advise UNESCO to prepare mechanisms for dealing with elements of resistance to the building of culture of peace which could emanate from people, bodies and organizations which are already using the youths in some cases to perpetrate violence and hatred,” Chaponda said.

He cited Malawi’s example of using food security as a tool to achieve a culture of peace and sustainable development.

“Malawi is implementing the school feeding programmes to keep children that are less privileged and cannot afford education not because they don’t have school fees but because of hunger due to violence and hatred,” Chaponda said.

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