Opposition leader Nankhumwa raps  Tonse govt over Form One selection

Leader of Opposition in parliament Kondwani Nankhumwa has described this year’s Form One selection in public secondary schools as flawed, saying the selection process was marred by favourism and political interference.

Nankhumwa: I question the procedure that has been used

This was after many Malawians took up in various social media platforms and traditional media to accuse the government of favouring the central region in the selection of form one students into public secondary schools.

Nankhumwa said the 2019/20 selection of learners from Standard 8 in primary schools to Form 1 in public and national secondary schools in Malawi has raised very serious suspicion.

He said according to what he gathered, 1 860 learners were selected to national secondary schools.

“Among these, 929 learners have been selected from the southern region; the central region has provided 749; and in the northern region, a negligible figure of 182 learners has been offered secondary school places,” he said.

He says in percentage terms, the southern region has 40%, and 50% and 10% for central and northern regions, respectively.

” While the central region has the lowest pass rate, it has been given lion’s share in selection of learners to national secondary schools,” he said.

Nankhumwa said he found the current situation grossly flawed, and only aimed at serving the interests of learners from other regions at the expense of the northern region learners.

“I question the procedure that has been used where learners from the northern region have been denied access to national secondary schools, even for those who are based within their ecosystem,” he said.

He said it is clear that politicians may have interfered with the selection process.

“It is clear that there has been favouritism in the selection of learners into Form 1 to the detriment of deserving northern region learners’ future.

“This is uncalled for and retrogressive in the new democratic Malawi where all citizens must enjoy equal rights, including the right to education” he said.

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) presidential aspirant said he is in disbelief at this turn of events saying because it is just not right and inconceivable to have such an education system in this democratic dispensation.

He said the Government must never compromise on education if it is serious about the country’s meaningful social and economic development.

Nankhumwa said there had been long-standing concerns over how difficult it was for learners, especially from the northern region, to get a place in public secondary schools and universities owing to the ‘Quota System’.

“Opponents of the Quota System vehemently argued that the core principle of educational equity requires that learners should not have their educational opportunities determined by their district, region or tribe.

“It is for that reason that in 2019, the DPP Government, under His Excellency former President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika, abolished the Quota System,” he said.

Nankhumwa said the DPP Government fully engaged the people of the northern region, through the influential Livingstonia Synod of CCAP, to review the Form 1 selection policy with a view to look at processes from examination to selection.

Following consultations that took place from 28th September, 2019 to 18th October, 2019, the two parties agreed that:

  1.  National Secondary School places shall be allocated on the basis of merit across the country regardless of proximity and economic cost. This meant that use of Quota Policy in selecting learners to secondary schools fell away;
  2.  Equitable access policy shall be applied to cater for women and vulnerable for Form 1 places as it was a common practice the world over where school places are limited; and
  3.  Selection to district boarding school, district day and community day secondary schools shall remain the benefit of learners within the same district.

Nankhumwa accused the Tonse alliance led government of renegating on the issue of quota system of education.

“It is, therefore, heart-breaking that despite political campaign rhetoric about abolishing the Quota System, the Tonse Government has reversed the selection policy decision that the DPP Government and the Livingstonia Synod made.

“Indeed, President Lazarus Chakwera informed Malawians on the campaign trail in the run-up to the 23rd June, 2020 court-sanctioned fresh presidential election that he would not only end the Quota System but “bury it” too,” he said.

He therefore demanded that the President and his Tonse Alliance administration must implement what they promised Malawians on the Quota System.

He said while it may practically be difficult and costly to nullify the entire selection process, there are some isolated instances, which require urgent review and correction.

He said for example, the case of northern region learners being denied national secondary school space even in secondary schools within their region should be looked into and corrected as a matter of urgency.

He said the Tonse Alliance Government to desist from politicizing education in this country.

“Memories are still fresh in the minds of Malawians, mainly from the northern region, how the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) regime used education to persecute and disadvantage some sections of the society.

“It is widely documented that in the late 1980s, the MCP regime ordered all teachers of northern origin to return to their home region. This was one of the most disturbing and shocking declarations by a regime whose leader preached about One Malawi and One Nation,” he said.

He said as a nation, we must jealously guard against the return of such autocratic tendencies.

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Neno
Neno
5 months ago

Nankhumwa iwe palibe chanzeru chili chose chomwe wunganenepo apa.

Wosawasiyila bwanji a Presidential candidate a dpp mu 2025 muno kuti ayakhulepo than iwe.

Medsonchimudima3@gmail.com
5 months ago

Northern being used here
Where is Mtambo now,
Answer he was swallowed by crocodile.
Wake up North.

nyarugwe
nyarugwe
5 months ago

Nankhumwa please establish facts first before laying claims which may turn out to be false. Do not become another Trump

Assange
5 months ago

Agalu inu ndi amene munawonanga dzikoli ndi kuba kwanuko. Ndalama za misonkho kumatenga and osamanga ma secondary school. By the time MCP were booted it had built a secondary school in each district. Additional schools included Mayani (where Nankhumwa got his MSCE with 39 points), Mulunguzi secondary school, Phalombe secondary school, Zingwangwa, Katoto, Chipasula, Namitete, Mboba, Chayamba and Mchinji. With increasing population you should have done much better than MCP. Today Nankhumwa is talking as if Malawians are dull. You introduced quota system even at primary level. Do you think education is for mbuli? Education is result oriented. Those with… Read more »

Jesus is Lord
Jesus is Lord
5 months ago

The issue is that these pupils are not selected on merit but on relations. Senior officials in govt choose who should go to National Secondary Schools. They send their kids there regardless of grades. The best we can do is to send our kids to catholic secondary schools and you will get the results for your kids. Even if you look at the MSCE performance of these national secondary schools, its not impressive zinali kale pamene ankasankha ana based on merit but pano aaa bola ma catholic schools, we know mwana akaphulako kanthu.

Lego
5 months ago

Nankhumwa is just a stupid man.Were you not there when your DPP government was doing this?At least now pupils are selected through merit.DPP did not abolish quota system but rather it was a campaigning tool to fool the Malawians especially people from the Central and Northern regions to vote for them.You must be the last person to talk and complain about this you for Nankhumwa.

Mwanamodzi
Mwanamodzi
5 months ago

“quata system is bad abolish it! , We want merit for selecting students!!!” That was a demand made before Chakwera voted into power. Because of pressure knowing that 50+1 is hassle, DPP at eleven hour announced that it will no longer use quata system once voted again into power hopping in getting votes from the north because that was a slogan for Tonse alliance. So either DDP or Tonse alliance could still apply quata system as it is now ” Because that What People from the north wants”. The question is, since quata system was bad and now merit is… Read more »

Ginimbi, the illuminate, the likes of Bushiri
Reply to  Mwanamodzi

I guess there is another way of selection, that is Tumbuka style, my guy you will never satisfy these creatures from the north, they are condemned permanently, nothing can reverse it

Chittanooga
Chittanooga
5 months ago

It is people like ginimbi who are happy when others facing problems to access secondary education. Very worrying.

Gulukunye
Gulukunye
5 months ago
Reply to  Mwanamodzi

Sadly merit was not used in this case.

Alamu Pumani Mwakalamba

Kondwani Nankhumwa should be the last person to say that. In the first place, can Nankhumwa tell us the number of secondary schools dpp built since they came to power in 2004? Kamuzu built schools in almost every district and the secondary schools were of high standards. Again, what did dpp do to correct the situation? If 150,000 have failed to make it to secondary schools, it means almost 1,500,000 failed PSLE in 10 years dpp were in power. Add that with those that failed under UDF. This means Malawi has a good number of thugs and prostitutes. DPP promoted… Read more »

Tchende Khwephe.
Tchende Khwephe.
5 months ago

Mbuzi yamunthu, Kamuzu anamanga Sukulu imodzi ngati sukudziwa (Kamuzu Academy) Zinazi tinamanga tokha ndi ndalama zathu zamisonkho. Chamwaka umachidizwa iwe? (Personal Tax).

Alamu Pumani Mwakalamba

Chitsiru cadet. What did dpp do with our taxes? Kamuzu at least put our taxes to good use.

Lego
5 months ago

Kodi unali ku Malawi or ukungomva chitsiru iwe.Ma Secondary School ukuwamvawa ana anamangidwa ndi Kamuzu.The last secondary schools amene anamanga Kamuzu asanasiye ndi awa Lisumbwi Sec Sch(Monkey-Bay),Chipoka Sec Sch etc mbuli iwe wamva

Bob Finye
Bob Finye
5 months ago

Chakwera only thinks about his tribe. How could he allow this?

JLo
JLo
5 months ago

There is no quota system here, best is to aborish so-called national secondary school, let’s have modern secondary school with all necessary equipment befetting a good modern school.

Mtonga Mwana
Mtonga Mwana
5 months ago
Reply to  JLo

I 100% agree with your reasoning. Let all secondary school be equipped with necessary equipment and move on

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