… MCA-N upgrades more schools
By Staff Reporter
WINDHOEK – MCA Namibia (MCA-N) handed over three newly-renovated schools in the Omaheke Region on Wednesday at Otjinene. The schools were renovated and upgraded with funds from the U.S. government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) to the Ministry of Education.
Gustav Kandjii Junior Secondary School, Epako Secondary School and Rietquelle Junior Secondary School are now equipped with computer rooms, science laboratories and libraries.
Some also received education equipment for the hearing and visually impaired, such as Gustav Kandjii situated in Otjinene some 160 kilometres north of Gobabis, where the hand-over took place. The three schools are part of the 47 schools that MCA-N has renovated over the past four years.
The ceremony was attended by Deputy Minister of Works and Transport, Kilus Nguvauva, Special Adviser to the Omaheke Regional Governor, Pijoo Nganate and MCA-N Director for Education, Tuli-Mevava Nghiyoonanye, as well as other dignitaries and 500 learners and community members.
Special Advisor to the Omaheke Regional Governor, Nganate, who delivered the governor’s speech, thanked MCA-N for its commitment to delivering quality education to remote parts of the country.
“I am impressed by the total physical transformation of these schools,” said Nganate who attended Gustav Kandjii school as a learner. “Our region has high unemployment and illiteracy rates and ranks among the poorest in the country. MCA-N has helped us to develop Otjinene as one of the fastest growing urban centres in Omaheke. You did great things, with great love.”
Otjinene Constituency Councilor, Adolfus Kangootui, reminded the audience that until 1962 there was no school in the area. “Many of us never went to school, therefore we don’t value education. We still measure our success in the amount of cattle we own. But this is not yesterday’s world, without education you will always be the prisoner of someone else,” said Kangootui.
“We at the MCA Namibia are confident that teachers are now in a position to make a difference in their delivery of and accounting for learning and performance outcome,” stated MCA-N Education Director, Tuli-Mevava Nghiyoonanye.
“Equally, MCA Namibia is convinced that parents and the community can now demand better results as these three schools as they are much better equipped than they were four years ago to offer high quality education especially in science, English and mathematics,” said Mevaya-Nghiyoonanye.
At the start of the Compact in 2010, Gustav Kandjii had a dismal Grade 10 pass rate of just 7 percent. In 2012 and as a direct result of the combined efforts of the Ministry of Education and MCA-N, the pass rate had climbed to 94 percent.
“MCA has given us a chance,” said Grade 9 learner Innocent Keja. “We now have our own textbooks and we have working lights to attend evening studies. We don’t just hear about physical science, but are able to do the experiments for ourselves. Because of the improvements, our disabled learners are now able to move freely and visually and hearing impaired learners have the resources to study just like anyone else. We are happier to go to school now. We will show our appreciation by working hard and making Gustav Kandjii one of the best schools in Omaheke.”
Deputy Minister, Kilus Nguvauva, who received the schools on behalf of the Namibian Government, thanked the Millennium Challenge Corporation and the American people. “I ask the principals to take good care of what they have been given and use it for the benefit of the learners, so that when people from the United States visit they can see that their investment has been worthwhile.”
The colourful ceremony, which was flanked by cultural performances, was closed with a vote of thanks from a learner of host school Gustav Kandjii.
MCA-N is implementing development activities in the country’s education, agriculture and tourism sectors financed by the United States Government through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) for US$ 304.5 million (N$ 3 billion) with the aim of reducing poverty through economic growth.
Forty-six percent (46%) of this amount (US$ 141.4 million) is budgeted for activities in the Namibian education sector.