The Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) has expressed disappointment over the lack of awareness and education in financial matters, which currently hovers around 55 percent.
RBM director of Consumer Protection and Financial Literacy Unit Hastings Mzoma says illiteracy on how people should manage their personal and household finances poses a great challenge to the country’s socio-economic aspirations.
He made the observation at the opening of a training workshop for secondary school teachers in financial education, which the bank organised in Blantyre to train teachers who will then be facilitators of subsequent trainings.
Mzoma disclosed that government had conducted a survey in 2008, which revealed a wide gap in financial literacy.
But he said,RBM was taking necessary measures to achieve a financially literate generation within a short period of time.
“And our starting points are schools; hence, this training to prepare teachers who will impart knowledge to students. We expect to train 450 teachers nationwide; starting from the south,” he said.
The Ministry of Education has since indicated that it is in the final stages of revising the secondary school curriculum, which incorporates financial education in different subjects of the syllabus.
Secretary for Education Macphail Magwira, said at the opening of the training workshop that the inclusion of financial education in the curriculum is a response to recommendations from consultative meetings, which preceded the review process.
Magwira emphasised his ministry will ensure the availability of instructional materials, quality of support structures and quality of teachers for a successful implementation of the curriculum.
He, however, challenged the teachers to be exemplary in managing their finances; arguing teachers needed to manage their own finances first before teaching others to do so.
“We can’t be proud that we’re delivering financial education to our students when we, as teachers, have challenges to manage our own finances and resources,” argued Magwira.
The training workshop attracted 100 secondary school teachers and inspectors.