By Frederick Philander
Last Wednesday the Ministry of Education signed a five-year partnership with the First National Bank Foundation and was handed a cheque of N$1,25 million as part payment.
The money is to be used for leadership training of school principals.
The week before the ministry also received N$1,5 million from Old Mutual for the same purpose.
“After 17 years of independence, Namibia finds itself still facing huge challenges in the education sector. Despite numerous reform programmes over the past years, output in the sector remains relatively poor. One area that has been identified as needing urgent action is the strengthening of leadership and management in the sector,” said minister of Education Nangolo Mbumba at the handing-over ceremony.
FNB’s board chairman, Dieter Voigts, and the Group CEO Vekuii Rukoro and leaders in the education sector attended the ceremony.
“This leadership training initiative will invite leaders to improve the situation in schools into a leadership and innovation network, with aims such as project teamwork, networking, coaching and mentoring as well as leadership development and training, combined with problem-solving, immersion in community reality and action-learning,” the minister stressed.
The leadership training will be done in conjunction with the University of Johannesburg.
“It is hoped that the University of Johannesburg will be developing a long-term relationship with the Windhoek College of Education, and later with the three other colleges of education in the country. Currently we have 30 school principals enrolled in the Further Diploma in School Management from Erongo, Kunene and the Oshana regions,” he told those present at the event.
In Mbumba’s view, the handing over of the money to ETSIP is testimony of serious corporate social investment where First National Bank has put its money where its heart, mind and mouth are.
In her comments about the financial injection into education, the chairperson of the FNB Foundation, Jutta Rohwer, emphasized that FNB was demonstrating its social responsibility towards helping to uplift the living standards of the Namibian people.