By Lydia Kalonde
Blantyre, August 21, Mana: Principal of Soche Technical College, Dhuya Mtawali, has asked government to bail the institution out of the K70 million debt it has accumulated in the last two-three years.
Mtawali made the plea when the Minister of Labour, Ken Kandodo toured the institution to appreciate the operations of the college.
He said the institution receives little funding from government against the expenditure towards feeding the students and procurement of learning materials.
However, Mtawali said since the college is mandated to run parallel programmes and conduct income generating activities, it has been using the funds realized from these two activities to pay back the loan but that it can still not suffice.
“We have tried our best to out-source but the debts are just too much for us to clear that is why we found this opportunity to you (the Minister) to help us settle this outstanding bill,” he said.
In response, Kandodo said he would talk to the Minister of Finance to see if the college could be supported through the budget.
“Because the college is the baby of the ministry, we cannot leave them alone, they need our support. As you are aware, parliament is meeting starting from September 4 and I will try talk to the Ministry of Finance to see if they may be assisted through the budget,” said Kandodo.
Kandodo, therefore, advised management of the college to look into the matter of fees adjustment as one way of generating enough revenue to effectively run the institution.
However, Kandodo expressed satisfaction with the way the college is run from new curriculum to the enrollment of a large number of youths into its programmes.
“I am very impressed with the periodic renewal of the curriculum to suit new technologies. This means that the college will still be relevant on the market as they will be offering services that are responding to the changes of the new world.
“This is what the world needs right now and this is also what the new government wants moving with time,” Kandodo said.