First Lady Gertrude Mutharika on Saturday donated assorted items to Providence Girls Secondary School in Mulanje district following the fire accident that damaged student’s property few weeks ago.
The assorted items include: 40 suitcases, 40 school bags, 40 mattresses, plastics cups and plates, soap, exercise books, mathematical instruments, bathing and facing towels, sanitary pads, 40 double deck beds and school uniforms for the affected 39 and the needy at the school.
Fire destroyed a hostel at the school on February 21, 2017 destroying property worth more than K100 million.
Speaking when she made the donation, Madame Mutharika said as a champion of girls’ education in the country she decided to intervene as the accident may have a bearing on girls’ education.
“We were really touched as Beautify Malawi when we heard that a hostel had been destroyed by fire. As you may be aware, we have been constructing hostels across the country and providing other support like bursary and scholarships to girls to promote and help them excel in education.
“I believe in the education of the girl child and this fire compromised that as the affected students lost nearly everything making it impossible for such girls to concentrate on their studies,” she observed.
The First Lady said she was personally concerned with the impact of the fire to the school especially the students considering that a lot of property was destroyed, some of great value.
“I know how painful this loss is to you all. Some of you were affected even psychologically. I am here to strengthen and encourage you all to continue working hard even amidst the problems and promise that everything will be alright,” she added.
Madame Mutharika, therefore, disclosed that the Beautify Malawi Trust stood ready to renovate the hostel and that 40 bags of cement were already underway and a contractor identified to start work by Sunday (tomorrow).
“As Beautify Malawi, one of our focus areas is construction of girls’ hostels and we were prepared to do so but since we have been told that some donors are already helping with that, we will still leave the cement here to be used for other purposes,” Mutharika said.
However, Mutharika commended management of the school, surrounding communities and well wishers who have provided help at the school during the tragedy, saying it is important to hold hands in ensuring girls education does not face any challenges in the country.
Minister of Education, Science and Technology, Bright Msaka commended madame Mutharika for her commitment to promoting girls education in the country through construction of hostels, provision of sanitary amenities and teaching and learning materials.
“I would like to acknowledge your generosity of heart. In fact, everything that you are doing is contained in the Malawi Growth and Development 111 which was launched last week which singles out education as area of emphasis,” Msaka said.
Archbishop of Blantyre Archdiocese, Thomas Luke Msusa assured that the Catholic Church would continue to complement government in her efforts to providing quality education to people in the country.
Msusa said the church has on its part solicited some support from local and international donors, noting that the response towards the renovation of the girls hostel at Providence was overwhelming.
Speaking earlier, Head Girl for Providence Secondary School Vanessa Disoni commended the first lady for showing interest and offering a helping hand, saying some of the students who were affected by the fire were not yet back from recovery as their parents were poor to replace some of the personal belongings destroyed by the fire.
The function was also attended by Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Kondwani Nankhumwa, Minister of Culture, Civic Education and Community Development, Cecilia Chazama, Home Affairs and Internal Security, Grace Chiumia and DPP General Secretary Grelzeder Jeffrey.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :