Memba: Schools still closed in Chipene and Lúrio

Memba: Schools still closed in Chipene and Lúrio
Memba: Schools still closed in Chipene and Lúrio

Africa-Press – Mozambique. The education sector in Memba district, Nampula province, is struggling with the issue of students as well as their respective teachers failing to return to primary and secondary schools there as a result of the fear generated by the terrorist attacks in the administrative posts of Chipene and Lúrio.

Of the 144 schools in Memba, only 100 have resumed activities since the suspension of classes due to the attacks which displaced 1,197 families, corresponding to 6,224 persons, many of them school-age children, according to local government authorities figures.

Despite the reopening of 100 schools, Ikweli has established that student and teacher numbers are still low, many of them having moved to Nacala, Nacala-a-Velha and the administrative post of Alua, Eráti district, along with significant numbers of another victims of terrorism in Nampula.

“Even last week the district administrator came in saying that activities should be resumed as of this week,” a source from the education sector in Memba told Ikweli. According to this source, despite the return of the families after the attacks on the Chipene administrative post, for example, students are still absent from schools, given that, often, only the adults return home, leaving children behind in safe havens.

“This makes it difficult to move forward with the work, because of the nature of our work is with the students,” the source explained. “If they leave their children in places of refuge, only the parents returning and just to harvest their cassavas, it becomes difficult. We did receive the order, yes, that we should start with the activities, they did enter the schools, but even so at this point without effect, due to the scenario [described].”

The source says that the situation is worse in Chipene and Lúrio, the two administrative posts which were hit by attacks.

“In these other schools there was no attack, but the fear that hovers among the population is greater,” the source stressed.

For example, the district of Memba should have about 72,044 students at the end of the first semester of this year, but after the attacks, and at the time of writing on Thursday, actually had only 42,927.

The same is true of the teaching staff, of whom only 517 out of a total of 795 assigned to the district of Memba have returned to their jobs.

Memba district borders Cabo Delgado, the province in the north of the country worst affected by terrorism.

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