“I have said consistently that schools should not be political battle grounds, in any form or fashion that is why I put bans on any political party using schools for political rallies,” Coltart told Radio VOP on Thursday.
He said it was wrong to coerce teachers, headmasters and worse still school children to provide money for any political party activities. “I have always said this contradicts our fundamental educational policy,” he said.
“In a nutshell what I can say is that all political parties please stay away from schools, please stop intimidating teachers, and stop disturbing innocent school children, because you are spoiling their future,” he said.
Zanu (PF) youths have been going to schools in Harare asking innocent school children to donate US$1 each for President Robert Mugabe’s 87th birthday bash.
Minister Coltart admitted that the recent Harare political violence had affected the education sector.
“Yes I have received reports of sporadic disturbances caused by violence, incidences of teachers being forced to donate some cash, and it’s unacceptable.”
Coltart said continued disturbances in the country’s education sector would reverse the gains the country had achieved over the past three decades.
Zimbabwe has one of the best literacy rate records in Africa but analysts are worried that this impressive record could soon be thrown out of the window if the youths are allowed to continue terrorising teachers and headmasters.