The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, President Robert Mugabe says the provision of education to every Zimbabwean child is the key to solving the problem of children living on the streets.President Mugabe was speaking during the commemoration of the Day of the African Child and the opening of the 19th Session of the Junior Parliament and National Debate in the capital.
It was a marvel for the dignitaries gathered to watch the juniors walk in the eldersâ€™ footsteps for a while as they first went through the paces of inspecting a Guard of Honour at the venue before proceeded to Parliamentary procedures as Zimbabweans belatedly joined the rest of the African continent in marking the Day of the African child.
The day of the African child which falls on the 16th of June every year was set aside by the African union to remember the day when school children were brutally gunned down by the apartheid regime in 1976 for standing up in protest against the introduction of Afrikaans language as a compulsory subject in their school Curricula.
The day was celebrated in Zimbabwe under the theme â€œA call for urgent action in favour of young people on the streetsâ€.
Addressing the thousands of children and youths, President Robert Mugabe said equipping every Zimbabwean child with education is the best solution to the problem of children living on the streets.
He explained that education is an empowering tool that creates opportunities for self-sustenance that enables individuals to fend for themselves and even create employment opportunities for fellow Zimbabweans.
In 1980, the new Zanu PF Government emphasized on improving access to education for previously disadvantaged Zimbabweans by improving education facilities through the building of new schools and Universities, the training of Primary and Secondary school teachers locally and abroad in Cuba.
Cde Mugabe said this strong bias towards educating Zimbabweans saw him embarking on the Fort Hare Scholarship Programme.
Cde Mugabe called on the students and youths to build on the gains of Zimbabweâ€™s hard won independence such as land reform and urged them to protect the countryâ€™s natural resources which he said should benefit Zimbabweans first and foremost.
Representatives of UNICEF, and other UN agencies working in Zimbabwe and other cooperating partners as well as Vice President Mujuru,Â Government Ministers; Saviour Kasukuwere whose ministry was in charge of the commemorations, Dr Olivia Muchena , the Deputy Minister of Education Lazarus Dokora, the Minister of Public Service Labour and Social Welfare, Mrs Paurina Mupariwa , President of the Senate, Cde Edna Madzongwe and other dignitaries attended the commemorations.