Saturday 1 October 2022


TERTIARY institutions and students should no longer pride themselves in having paper qualifications, but the ability to produce something tangible, which demonstrates the knowledge acquired during one’s time at college, President Mnangagwa has said.

The education system, the President said, should adequately empower a graduate to be self-sustaining and contribute to national development, consistent with the Government’s thrust of modernisation and industrialisation to ensure the attainment of an upper middle income society by 2030.

President Mnangagwa made the remarks while addressing Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT) students and Zanu PF supporters at the institution’s farm where he was launching an Industrial Cattle Fattening Pens and Medicinal Feed Factory, which is part of several initiatives and innovations by the institution.

“We must have a high performance and results culture within the higher and tertiary education ecosystem,” he said.

“Paper qualification can be futile if you cannot produce something tangible. We must celebrate producing something tangible.

“We must no longer celebrate because you now have a paper qualification, but that you have been moulded in a practical way that enables you to produce goods and services.”

President Mnangagwa said as graduates come out of institutions of higher learning, they should be able to produce something to contribute to development, hence the adoption of Education 5.0.

He had the crowd in stitches when he said the late national hero and former Cabinet Minister, Dr Eddison Zvobgo, used to say they had stopped slaughtering beasts if a family member graduated, lest they would empty their cattle pen given the high number of relatives graduating.

President Mnangagwa said with the multi-pronged strategy and projects introduced by the Government, the time for food insecurity had gone.

“These projects are timely, coming as my Government is scaling up the implementation of the livestock growth strategy and the broader multi-pronged agriculture and food system transformation strategy.

“Firstly, Zimbabwe is an agricultural country. We cannot continuously be referred to as a food insecure country. Yes, there is climate change but we have to work for ourselves and the first thing we must do as a country is to be food secure.

“For that to happen we need to determine the quantity we consume annually as a country and plan to produce accordingly including surplus.

“We have noted that we need a minimum of 340 000 hectares under irrigation. Over the years we have never produced enough wheat, we have just been producing wheat lasting for just two months and import the balance from Ukraine where there is war,” said the President.

Zimbabwe is now producing enough wheat to meet national requirements.

President Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe used to import fertiliser from Russia, but it has been established that the raw materials to produce fertiliser are available locally.

He commended CUT for making a positive contribution to the growth of the education system and the economy in general.

“I therefore commend CUT for demonstrating that you are responsive and trailblazing in your areas of specialisation.

“This specifically relates to advancing production and productivity, food security and nutrition.

“Well done Chinhoyi University. With this spirit, I urge other universities and colleges to continue cultivating vital knowledge, requisite competencies needed for modernisation and industrialisation and sustained social economic growth of our beloved country Zimbabwe. We must develop it ourselves,” said President Mnangagwa.

He reminded those who want to help in Zimbabwe’s development trajectory to do so on the country’s terms. Herald


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