Elections: Schools to close early; third term opening brought forward

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Following President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s proclamation of July 30 as the date for this year’s General elections, government has moved to announce schools will close early.

The move is probably two pronged, to protect children from the political mayhem and possible chaos as well as to open up schools for use as polling stations.

According to a statement released by permanent secretary in the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education Sylvia Utete-Masango, the third term has also been brought forward to compensate for lost time.

“Following the proclamation of the 2018 harmonised elections scheduled for 30 July 2018, the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education advises that schools will close for the second term on Thursday 26 July 2018 and open for the third term on Tuesday 4 September 2018.

“The opening of school in the third term has been brought forward as a measure to compensate for the early closure,” said Utete-Masango.

She added: “In addition schools should put programs in place to ensure that no learner is disadvantaged.”

There have been complaints from human rights groups that political parties especially the ruling Zanu PF and MDC Alliance have forced children to attend their rallies.

Zanu PF has reportedly further coerced schools to donate their buses to ferry it’s supporters to rallies and at times forced the closure of some schools across the country.