By Meclina Chirwa
Lack of adequate water sanitation and hygiene materials is said to be a major challenge hindering education at Chipala primary school in Mgona, Lilongwe.
Head teacher of the school Rachael Banda, told Timveni the problem is worsened by the community’s interference and encroachment which is posing a great risk to learners.
Banda said, "The school has limited resources including seventy-two toilets, one borehole and a tap and it is very unfortunate that the facilities are also shared with the community."
According to Banda, it is extremely saddening that relevant stakeholders are failing to provide enough hygiene facilities because the school is somehow controlled by the community.
"The community usually issues threats to those willing to carrying out any development activity at the school." explained Banda.
Banda added that although the matter is in court, there is need for government and other stakeholders to take an immediate action to rescue the learners.
In his remarks, coordinator of urban water at Water Aid Malawi Edgar Themba Phiri said the organization is striving to provide better water, sanitation and hygiene services at the facility.
Water, sanitation and hygiene services in schools promotes hygiene and increases access to quality education but also supports national and local interventions to establish equitable, sustainable and access to safe water and basic sanitation services in schools.
Sadly, as things stand, without better hygiene conditions, learners at Chipala Primary School will have a tough and dangerous ride to access quality education.