Kisoro – Kisoro district registered a 50.1% school dropout rate from the Batwa community in 2020; a research conducted has revealed.
This is according to research done in February 2020 by the African international Christian ministry (AICM) in partnership with minority rights group funded by the government of Finland and the ministry of foreign affairs.
African international Christian ministry (AICM) programs officer Mucyunguzi Denis attributed the high school dropouts among Batwa community to poverty, discrimination, long distances to government-aided schools among others.
He made the remarks on Thursday while meeting kisoro district officials at Bam2 hotel. The meeting was aimed at finding possible mechanisms to end school dropouts among Batwa community.
According to research done by AICM, poverty is a big challenge to education access among Batwa communities. African international Christian ministry (AICM) programs officer Mucyunguzi Denis noted that most parents from the Batwa community cannot afford scholastic materials, food at home and sanitary pads for girls.
Both Ndizeye James and Nyamihanda Alice from the Batwa community blamed parents for the high rate of school dropouts from Batwa community.
They maintain most Batwa parents are irresponsible and they mind less about the education of their children.
Ndizeye James and Nyamihanda Alice got an opportunity to attain high education level and they promised to use their experience in carrying out sensitization about value of education to their communities.
Serutoki Stephen, an elder from Batwa community urged well-wishers to think about taking Batwa children to schools far away in another district. This, he said will keep them away from their family members who may discourage them from studying.
Kisoro district education officer Mbonyebyombi Emmanuel asked organizations that are supporting Batwa community to form supervisory committees that will oversee the donated goods. He said that Batwa have a tendency of selling out goods donated to them which he said that demoralizes the donors.
Kisoro district health education officer Nyanguburofa Dismus promised to present the need to have VHT from the Batwa community who will help in carrying out mobilization on health issues. He however expressed his concern about poor living standards of Mikingo Batwa community in Kisoro municipality.
He proposed that the Mikingo Batwa community should be relocated to other places so that they can engage in farming and be able to earn a living.
Nyarusiza Sub-county male councillor Mfitumukiza John who represented LCV chairperson Abel Bizimana in the Meeting appealed to humanitarians to put much effort in Kisoro district saying it hosts a big number of Batwa compared to other districts in the Kigezi region. He described LCV chairperson Abel Bizimana as the most person who advocates for the wellbeing of the Batwa community.
Nyarusiza Sub-county LCV councillor Sebasigari Aneti noted that there is a need to instil discipline among the Batwa community if they must develop. He said that some of Batwa believe in violence saying this creates bias from communities of other people who prefer to dissociate from them because of their behaviours.e