MBERENGWA – Chegato High, the biggest secondary school in Mberengwa may close down in the next few weeks due to critical water shortages caused by the destruction of power lines that supply power to the boreholes.
The power installations were destroyed by Cyclone Dineo induced floods that have severely hit Mberengwa. Some 83 day scholars are failing to access the school because of floods.
Zesa has informed the community that repairing the power lines may take the next three months as a new transformer and power lines are required before power is restored.
Midlands Provincial Education Director, Agnes Gudo confirmed the situation and said a team from his office was on the road to the school to assess the situation before a comprehensive report is sent to the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education before a final decision is made.
School Development Association chairman Edgar Mashiri said the situation was out of hand as Chegato is a large community with over 1000 students 100 teachers and their families.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church run school is literally sitting on a health time bomb as there is no running water in the school and yet the institution use flush toilets. The blair toilets at the school were destroyed after the change-over to the flush toilets.
The Mirror is told that some pupils resorting to the school grounds to relieve themselves. The single borehole at the school is not enough to supply water for various purposes such as bathing, toilet system, dining hall purposes and teachers' cottages.
The school reserve tanks have dried up since there is no water supply from Chimwe Dam for the past two weeks.
"As a province we received the report from the school (Chegato) and we are on our way to assess the situation. A report shall be submitted to the Perm-Sec who will give the final verdict word on whether to close or keep the school open," said Gudo.
"The situation is now beyond our control. As you know Chegato has a large enrolment with over a thousand pupils. Health problems are inevitable and we therefore urgently await the intervention of the Ministry," he said.
Chief Potsai Mposi said about 83 Chegato primary school pupils excluding ECD pupils and five teachers cannot attend school business due to the destroyed bridge.
He said although the Ministry of Education has ordered the teachers and pupils to go to Ruvabvu Primary school it is an issue of concern as the school is 17kilometers away while secondary pupils will have to walk an additional 7 kilometers to Maringambizi.
"Children are now forced to walk a very long distance due to a government directive and that is not feasible; imagine a grade one pupil walking 17 kilometrs and rains are still pouring," he said.
In areas such as Matehwa, Gwarava, Mapiravana, Mutsime, Chimwe school pupils have been instructed not to go to school due to flooded rivers and destroyed bridges.