The Zimbabwe School Examination Council (Zimsec) says public examinations will proceed as scheduled on Friday after the government declared October 25, 2019, a public holiday to pave way for the SADC Anti-Sanctions Day.
At its 39th Ordinary Summit in Tanzania in August, regional bloc Sadc decided set October 25 as the day to call for the lifting of sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by Western countries.
This comes at a time when candidates are currently sitting for their Ordinary and Advanced Level public examinations.
In an interview with CITE, Zimsec spokesperson Nicky Dlamini said the examinations will proceed as planned.
“The examinations are still on as they are a national exercise; as of now we have not received any directive from the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education,” said Dlamini.
“Teachers are employed under the Ministry so invigilators will be there on the day.”
She referred CITE to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Paul Mavima who said all candidates should report to the examination centers as examinations are still on.
“All candidates should report to their centers as scheduled as exams are still on, they will not be affected by the anti-sanctions march,” said Min. Mavima.
“Centres will be open on Friday all those seating for their examinations.”
Meanwhile, the government has given permission for learners to participate in the anti-sanctions demo.
In a letter dated 15 October addressed to the Provincial Education Director Harare Metropolitan Province, the Permanent Secretary for Primary and Secondary Education, Tumisang Thabela wrote:
“Your office is requested to facilitate the release of 2 304 learners and teachers who formed the Independence Mass Display team 2019 from High Glen District Schools for the Mass display which performances, which the Ministry will present on 25 October 2019 at a venue to be advised.
“May you also facilitate for 30 general hand staff from Warren Park/ Mabelreign District to assist with the laying of background art books which shall be used for the performance,” the letter read.
“You are requested to ensure the availability of the learners and their teachers for this important government event without disrupting examinations that are already in progress.”
In response, Minister Mavima told CITE that learners that are needed will not be part of those writing examinations.
“We have 4.5 million learners and, in this case, we only want 2 304 learners who will not be part of those writing their exams. And we also have about 127 000 teachers, only those that are not part of the invigilation process will participate in the march,” said Min. Mavima.