03 March 2017: His Excellency Dr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, the former President of Tanzania and member of the International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity, The Education Commission, visited the SADC Secretariat to present the Commission’s report as part of his mission to advocate for countries to prioritise education on their development agendas.

The Commission’s report focuses on four transformations that needs to take place in the areas of performance, innovation, inclusion and finance to ensure that learners receive quality and equitable education. His Excellency Dr. Kikwete said that the Education Commission’s report which was released late last year has shocking results.

He explained that the report found that if the world continued moving at the current pace of dedication to education, by 2030, more than 800 million children in low and middle-income countries – half of the world’s 1.6 billion children – will not be able to secure basic secondary-level skills equipping them for the labour market.

“Of these 800 million, 228 million children will not even be in school and 400 million will leave school without even the most basic primary level qualifications’’, the former president of Tanzania said.

The Education Commission was co-convened by Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, President Michelle Bachelet of Chile, President Joko Widodo of Indonesia, President Peter Mutharika of Malawi and the Director-General of UNESCO Irina Bokova, to contribute toward improved and equitable education in the world.

The UN Special Envoy for Global Education, and Former United Kingdom Prime Minister Gordon Brown, serves as the Chair of the Commission which comprises high-level individuals representing diverse geographical and disciplinary backgrounds.

In response, the SADC Executive Secretary, Her Excellency Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Tax welcomed His Excellency Dr. Kikwete to the Secretariat and assured him that the Secretariat will study the report and come up with a plan to sensitize Member States of the issues highlighted in the report. She further requested H.E. Dr. Kikwete to convey SADC’s request to the Commission, to support SADC prepare a plan that will enable SADC to address the highlighted challenges, while taking into account the unique requirements of SADC.

(reprinted from SADC.int )