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2.6m children out of school in KP, says Mahmood

Updated April 09, 2019


CM opens school enrolment drive in Khyber tribal district. — DawnNewsTV/File
CM opens school enrolment drive in Khyber tribal district. — DawnNewsTV/File

LANDI KOTAL: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan on Monday said new schools would be built wherever they’re needed in tribal districts, while over 6,000 posts of teachers would be created for the region before they’re filled by the local educated youths.

Mr Mahmood revealed this during a ceremony held at the Shaheed Abdul Azam Government High School in Jamrud area of Khyber tribal district to inaugurate the school enrolment campaign.

He opened the drive by filling admission forms of some children.

Federal minister for federal education and professional training Shafqat Mahmood, federal minister for religious affairs Noorul Haq Qadri, adviser to the chief minister on education Ziaullah Bangash, MNA Iqbal Afridi and officials of the elementary and primary education department and National Commission for Human Development were also present on the occasion.

CM opens school enrolment drive in Khyber

The CM said around 2.6 million children were out of school across KP and 800,000 of them would be enrolled in the current campaign slated to last until the end of April.

He said another such drive would be launched in Sept.

Mr Mahmood told participants that Article 25-A of the Constitution guaranteed free education for every child above the age of four years and therefore, every government was bound to comply with it.

He said he felt privileged to begin the province’s enrolment drive in a tribal district, which remained deprived and ignored during the last seven decades.

“Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed us to pay regular visits to the newly-merged tribal districts and resolve the problems of the residents in accordance with their suggestions and aspirations,” he said.

The chief minister said as directed by the premier, the government had developed a schedule of the regular visits of all provincial ministers to the region and that the visits would begin soon.

Federal minister Shafqat Mehmood said the federal government had begun a ‘jihad’ against poverty, illiteracy and backwardness.

He said only 58 percent of the country’s population was literate, while 32 percent were completely illiterate, which posed a serious challenge for the government.

“The federal government has devised a plan to educate people including adult illiterate and has begun a literacy programme for imparting education in informal schools,” he said.

Religious affairs minister Noorul Haq Qadri suggested to the KP chief minister to announce additional allowance for women teachers posted to far-flung tribal districts.

The chief minister promised to approve that allowance after consulting the relevant authorities.

Earlier, Mr Mahmood inaugurated work on the 7.78km Bara Bypass Road, which will connect Bara with Jamrud in Sur Kamar area.

The road will be completed in two years at the cost of Rs967 million to be provided by the USAID.

The chief minister also planted a sapling at the Jamrud grid station to begin the Clean and Green Pakistan plantation campaign in tribal districts.

Published in Dawn, April 9th, 2019