Peshawar: Panelists here at consultative conference have demanded of the provincial government to increase budgetary allocations to education sector, particularly for promotion of girls education, and stressed the need to ensure gender parity in the sector.
The participants said due to slow pace of funds utilization, the situation is quite dismal in education sector in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. They stressed that the provincial government should prioritise the education sector, and to ensure maximum spending on girls education. They suggested there should be decreased non-development budget in by making substantial increase in development funds in the primary and secondary education sector.
The conference on themed: Fund the Future: Invest in Girls Education, organised by Pakistan Coalition for Education (PCE), a non-government organization, in collaboration with Khwendo Kor and IDEA organizations at a local hotel here on Thursday, in which Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Minister for Mine and Mineral Development, and Labour, Anisa Zeb Tahir Kheli participated as chief guest. The PCE National Coordinator, Zehra Arshad acted as moderator at the function.
Besides, officials of provincial elementary and secondary education department, representatives of civil society organisations, lawyers, educationists, provincial legislators, media persons, and people from different walk of life participated in the consultative session.
Zehra Arshad in his opening remarks highlighted the promotion of girls education is vital for sustainable economic development and progress in the country. She said the successive governments failed to allocate sufficient funds for promotion of the education sector, with particular focus on female education. She called to make substantial increase in development budget of country, atleast four per cent of the total budgetary allocations in the upcoming fiscal year.
The speakers stressed the need for maximum budgetary allocations for pre and post teaching training program. They called to take steps for prevention of political intervention in the education sector.
Some participants viewed that social taboos and traditions are main hurdles in promotion of girls education in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. They emphasized the need of creation of proper awareness to increase female literacy ratio in the province.
The provincial Minister said while speaking on the occasion said the incumbent provincial government is committed to promote quality education, saying that a considerable increase was made during current financial year to education sector.
KP is performing quit better in education sector under the prevailing circumstances, said Anisa Zeb. She added the province was confronted with host of challenges, like security threats and natural disastrous. Despite the fact, she said provincial government was making all out efforts to ensure promotion of quality education at every level.
The Minister demanded the holding of national population census, which could make easier to ascertain exact number of children, which were out of school across the country. She said the provincial government is making legislation to ensure free and compulsory education. For this purpose, she said the consultation sessions would be conducted before enactment of Article 25-A from the provincial legislative Assembly.