22,569 pupils could be stranded on Monday after Harare shuts down 448 ‘illegal’ schools

HARARE – Thousands of learners could find their schools closed on Monday after the government shut down 448 schools and colleges it said were operating illegally.

The institutions have a total enrolment of 22,569.

Tafadzwa Muguti, the secretary for provincial affairs and devolution in Harare, said the institutions – which are also accused of tax evasion – have been given up March 31 to comply with regulations.

Muguti said Wednesday: “Whilst the initial list comprised of 400 illegal schools and colleges, the blitz managed to identify 448 schools and colleges that did not comply with any government or local authority requirement.

“To date, a total of 320 schools have been shut down due to non-compliance, whilst 273 owners of these illegal institutions have been arrested and are appearing before the courts.”

Muguti said learners “will be affected when schools reopen on February 7, 2022.”

He said whilst the institutions had been given up to March 31 to comply, “those arrested will still appear before the courts.”

We encourage all those operating schools and colleges illegally across the province to take advantage of this grace period and regularise with the ministry, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority and all local authorities,” Muguti added.

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