Parliamentarians from Northen Province have asked government not to deny the region public infrastructure development and have appealed to the Patriotic Front (PF) government to avoid being discriminative in the distribution of development.
Nsenga Hills Member of Parliament Kapembwa Simbao and his Lubansenshi independent law maker Patrick Mucheleka have said governmen should consider extending infrastructure development in the education sector to Northen Province which they felt was being segregated.
Contributing to the debate on the budget on education on Tuesday, the two MPs from Northern Procvince complained that while the newly created Muchinga Provincce was already boasting of having two universities, Northen Province was not budgted for in the education sector.
They said it was worrying that infrastructure development in the education sector was seemingly tilted to one region and appealed to government exercise fairness in budgeting for development across the country.
In his debate, Simbao said there was need for government to increase funding in the education sector because the sector had suffered serioud brain drain in the early 80s with the country having lost the best teachers who had migrated to Botswana.
He said Botswana had taken most of the best teachers from Zambia to build their own education system which had become much better that what was currently obtaining in country.
“There is need to balance infrastructure development across the country particularly the education sector. The newly created Muchinga Province has two universities already under construction and there is nothing in Northen Province. Government should taler a leaf from Botswana which in the 80s got Zambia’s best teeachers to build their education sector. Botswana education system has now become one of the best in the region. So government should not be seen to be discriminative in the distribution of development,” Simbao said.
And Minister of Education John Phiri said it was surprising that people from Northen Province could be complaining about the lack of development in the region because according him, there was no difference between the two regions and that the boundaries were artificial and should not worry anyone.
Dr Phiri told Parliament that it was the intention of government to balance development and to have a university in all the provinces across the country.
He said there was no doubt that all provinces would have a university adding that government had not started started building universities in Northen Province and Southern Province not because it was discriminating the regions.