By Chapatali Ndau
Children Owners Association of Malawi (COAM) has warned that it will drag to Court Independent Private Schools Association of Malawi (ISAMA) should the organization go on with its intention to open private schools on 13th July 2020.
Dr. C. Padambo in his response to the notice issued by ISAMA on its intention to have the schools opened on 13 the July, said his association would like to remind ISAMA that the paramount right is to have life.
“The association would like to remind you that the paramount right is to have life. Other rights, this include right to education, are exercised because there is life. Therefore, it is very important to make sure that this right to life is protected by all means.” Said Padambo.
ISAMA on 4th July, 2020 wrote to its membership reminding principals, directors, administrators and head teachers of private schools to open their schools on 13th July, 2020.
“I would like to inform you that all independent (private) schools will open on 13th July 2020 after about four months closure due to Covid 19,” reads in part the ISAMA letter signed by Joseph Patel, ISAMA president.
Padambo noted that the world, including Malawi, is struggling with the deadly COVID-19 (Coronavirus) that has killed dozens of people across the globe hence prompted the school closure.
“Therefore, as an association we would like to inform you and the general public that on 13th July, 2020 no child should report for school. The school which will operate on that particular day will face us in the court of law because it will be like killing our own children which is contrary to the right to life. Parents are also advised not send their children to school on that said date, otherwise appropriate measures will be applied to them,” read in part the response letter to private schools call.
Padombo in the letter said, “we believe that life cannot wait while education can wait” adding “ Malawi government through ministry of education in collaboration with ministry of health are the ones responsible to tell us on the exact date of opening schools after thorough investigations.”
However Patel in his communication to the ISAMA membership informed the private schools that the Task Force of Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, came up with the date and was approved by the Presidential Task Force on Covid 19 with strict guide line set by the education task force.
Among others Patel say the schools are supposed to disinfect the schools before the school opens.
“ It is mandatory that all students from primary to secondary schools, teachers and employees put on face masks while at school and therefore remind the parents to buy face masks for their children” reads in part the letter.