Two Nyabata High School pupils who aced 20 and 15 points in the ZIMSEC November 2020 Advanced Level examinations with straight As from a combination of four and three subjects respectively have their dreams of acquiring tertiary education hanging in the balance as their parents cannot afford university fees.
Tatenda Mutava (19), who scored 20 points, lost his father in 2008 when he was six years old and he lives with his mother while the other one Progress Mafukidze (19) lost her mother when she was only 10 years old.
Mutava said his ambitions lie in three programs which are Actuarial Science, Biomedical Engineering and Geology but his dream is hanging in the balance since neither his mother nor his brother can afford to send him for higher learning.
Mutava’s mother struggled paying for his school fees and was sometimes assisted by his elder brother who lives in South Africa, though the assistance was not consistent.
“I encountered financial challenges from primary school and when I was in secondary school I did not attend school constantly because I had to go and work in people’s fields to raise money for school fees with my brother sometimes assisting me.
Mutava completed his ‘O’ Level in 2018 after he sat for 11 subjects and proceeded to ‘A’ Level where he took up a combination of Pure Mathematics, Biology, Crop Science and Geography where he scored 20 points.
“I worked as a herd boy after completing my ‘O’ Level in a bid to raise money for my ‘A’ Level school fees, but it was not enough and my brother assisted me here and there. I worked during my holidays so that I could complete my ‘A’ Level.
“My mother has been there for me, giving me strength even in those times I felt like giving up. Now the challenge is in getting fees for tertiary education since it is very expensive and both my mother and my brother cannot afford and I appeal to anyone who can assist me to fulfil my dream. ,” said Mutava.
Mafukidze said her sister paid for her fees since after her mother passed away when she was ten years old and relied on her until she completed ‘A’ Level but now she no longer afford tertiary education fees since it is very expensive.
Her father failed to pay for her fees since he is unemployed and survive on doing menial jobs in the village.
“My father used to pay for my fees when he had a job and when he lost his job my sister started paying for my fees and l managed to complete both ‘O’ and A’ Level, but she can no longer afford to pay for my tertiary education,” said Mafukidze.
Both students said it would be unfair for them to give up on their dreams because of financial challenges and called on well-wishers to come to their rescue.
“I really wish to go to university but from where I stand now it is very difficult unless someone comes to my aid.
“I am looking for scholarships or sponsors as who can help disadvantaged people like me. I have since applied at the University of Zimbabwe and got a place to do Accounting but I am stuck and if I fail to get any help I will miss the chance,” said Mutava.
Nyabata High School head Boniface Chuma said the two pupils are very bright and has been working hard in helping them find assistance so that they can proceed to tertiary education but nothing has materialized so far.
“These pupils are bright but they have financial challenges hindering them from continuing with tertiary education. I am appealing on their behalf to anyone who can hook them up with scholarships so that they fulfill their dreams,” said Chuma.
Mutava is currently living with his mother in Nhongo village, Zaka district while Mafukidze is living with her sister in Guwa village under Chief Nyajena, Masvingo district.