The National, Wednesday 24th April 2013
By PISAI GUMAR
FREE education policy is putting a strain on existing school facilities and requires additional teachers, Markham MP Paul Isikiel says.
He said that free education had its disadvantages despite the opportunities it created for more children to be educated.
Isikiel said this at the Markham Valley High School in Morobe when presenting K2.7 million to cater for tertiary students.
The MP, who is also the Minister for Housing and Urbanisation, said with the increased number of student enrollment in the district, another high school would be built in the remote and under-developed Wantoat area.
Former Markham MP Koni Iguan initiated the Wantoat school project and allocated K200,000. Funding was also provided by Kabwum MP Bob Dadae (K50,000), Morobe provincial government (K1 million) and Isikiel K400,000.
Isikiel said another K2 million would be sought from Finance Minister and Education James Marape.
“Education is crucial and a foundation on which any development flows swiftly and to improve human livelihoods in my district, it is my onus to set in place required education facilities for a brighter future,” he said.
District education adviser Henry Mileng added that human resources development required money and Isikiel was investing for the benefit of the three council areas – Umi-Atzera, Leron-Wantoat and Onga-Waffa.
The MP also allocated K501,000 to improve classrooms and dormitories for high schools and K690,000 to primary and elementary schools in the Markham district.
Markham Valley High School deputy principal Billy Kayo also said that human resources development was vital for other development such as infrastructure.