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Dokora: Constitution to Address Language Issues in Schools

A Zanu PF representative says regional education officers and headmasters also have a role to play in the deployment of teachers

Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Lazarus Dokora says his ministry will adopt a holistic approach as outlined in the new constitution to address the issue of deployment of non-Ndebele speaking teachers in Matabeleland region, especially in primary schools.

Speaking at a workshop organized by Zanu PF Secretary for Education Dr. Sikhanyiso Ndlovu in Bulawayo during the weekend, Dokora acknowledged the problem, but emphasized that the constitution acknowledges 16 languages in the country, which will be implemented once the cabinet approves the document.

Ndlovu confirmed the meeting to Studio 7, adding that regional education officers and headmasters also have a role to play in the deployment of teachers. However, he declined to comment further.

Others have suggested a quota system in the teacher-training enrolment process depending on where the training college is located.

This follows a recent outcry by residents, parents, and political leaders in Matabeleland that children were taught in languages they do not understand.

For perspective on this issue, reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga turned to Morris Ngwenya, political commentator and Zanu PF member, who says the government is not reneging on its promise to investigate the language issue in Matabeleland, but tackling the matter in the best way possible.

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The workshop also tackled other issues of concern within the ministry of education; such as shortage of teachers and the introduction of a new curriculum.