Blind student in Lilongwe misses school term due to lack of fees

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Blind student misses second term due to lack of fees

A visually impaired Form One student at Namitete Secondary School, Mwayi Josiya, has missed the second term of the current school year after being sent back from school due to lack of school fees.

While her friends are in school, the girl-child has been languishing at her home at  Chimbwi Village, Traditional Authority Khongoni in Lilongwe and has been left behind because of lack of K120,000 school fees.

In an interview, Mwayi said she was selected to Namitete Secondary School from Malingunde School for the Blind after sitting for Primary School Leaving Certificate of Education (PSLCE).

In the first term of Form 1, her mother managed to raise K50,000 for her fees while the Malawi Union for the Blind (MUB) contributed K70,000.

“In term two [which started on 8 January, 2024], my mother did not have money for fees and MUB did not also pay its contribution. In the second week, all students who had not paid fees were kicked out of school. We have not heard from the headteacher or MUB since then,” said Mwayi.

She added: “I feel sad everyday because my friends are in school while she I am here in the village.”

According to Mwayi, some of the things she needs include soap, a travel bag, sanitary pads school jersey and eyeglasses which protect her from wind.

“But the main thing I need is school fees. I can use a single bar soap in school provided I am getting an  education because that is what will help me to become independent in future,” she said.

Mwayi’s mother, Eluby Kalazi, told Malawi24 that Mwayi was born partially blind. When she was six, she started Standard 1 at a nearby primary school but could not continue due to her disability. Her mother consulted another family with a visually impaired child and got to know about Malingunde School for the Blind.

Mwayi was eventually enrolled at the boarding school and her mother was only providing transport for her to travel from or to the school.

After she was selected to Namitete Secondary School, Mwayi stayed at home for the first two weeks of the first term until a teacher Malingunde, her former school, informed the family that MUB would be contributing  K70,000 to the child’s school fees.

Kalazi, who has four other children and relies on farming, said she borrowed the remaining K50,000 and carried out piece works to provide for Mwayi’s other needs.

“Since Mwayi was sent back, she has been struggling. I am asking well-wishers to support my child get education,” said Kalazi.

To get in touch with Mwayi, you can contact her mother on 0998580561

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