Deputy Minister of Education Nancy Chaola Mdooka has assured people of Jalira in Rumphi district that government is working tooth to nail to make sure that the area has electricity and safe water in soonest time.
Mdooka made the remarks on Friday when she inspected progress on Jalira Secondary School to identify critical areas the government needs to intervene, especially, in lobbying the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (ESCOM) and the Northern Region Water Board to supply utilities.
The inspection was in response to Rumphi West Constituency Member of Parliament Yona Mkandawire who told August House that people of his area need electricity and safe water.
Speaking on the sidelines of the inspection, Mdooko said the ministry is impressed with the progress of the school, and said government is committed to support the donor complete the work.
“As a ministry, we are impressed with what I have seen here. Since I have been delegated by the hon. minister, when I go back, I will report to her, and I will report to His Excellency the President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera because under his leadership, he said he doesn’t want to leave anyone behind. And we don’t want to leave people of Rumphi behind,” she said.
Mdooko added that her ministry will strategize a way forward with Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Water and Sanitation to make sure that people of Jalira have electricity and safe water.
“We will laisse with our counterparts like Ministry of Water and Sanitation, and Ministry of Energy, and we map the way forward on how best we can help the people of Rumphi,” added Mdooko.
In his remarks, Rumphi West Legislator Yona Mkandawire commended government for taking into account concerns of Rumphi West constituents, saying girls in the area will no longer walk long distances to access secondary education.
Mkandawire added that the deputy minister’s visit is a clear indication that concerns of people from his area will be addressed.
“We hope that the coming of the Minister will help the donor not to pull back because she has plans to build a university and a hospital, but she says she cannot continue to do it because she is struggling to get water and electricity. With the coming of the Minister, I am very happy that she will help us lobby the others ministries to come in and help the place to get developed,” said Mkandawire.
The legislator added that Rumphi District Council has engaged Northen Region Water Board to have a borehole in the area to supply about 50 thousand liters of water per which will support the school when it opens.
On a long-term plan, Mkandawire said government has given them a grant from African Development Bank through the Northern Region Water Board to have piped water at the school in 2026.
Sister Young Sim Becky, the driving force behind the construction of Jalira Secondary School, said she is passionately advocating for prioritizing education as a means to alleviate suffering.
Becky, however, stressed that the project’s future progression hinges on securing access to water and electricity.
Becky’s vision for Jalira is to transform it into a top-tier educational facility, a goal that depends on these essential utilities.
Group Village Head Jeyeka Mbaje of the Jalira community emphasized that the project has created local employment opportunities at the construction site and, once completed, will help prevent girls from dropping out of school due to long distances, thereby promoting girls’ education.