World Bicycle Relief (WBR) global director of programmes Eric Showell says Malawi can attain quality education if students have mobility means to get to school.
He made the observation yesterday at Umodzi Community Day Secondary School (CDSS) in Zomba when the organisation launched a bicycle distribution exercise to students at Zomba and Machinga secondary schools.
Showell said apart from walking 15 kilometres to and from school on daily basis, students, especially girls, face sexual harassment and other challenges along the way.
“We are optimistic that these bicycles will enable them cycle fast to school and escape perpetrators who harass them on their way to school,” he said.
South East Education Division planning officer MacDonald Kuse, who was the guest of honour at the event, asked the students to focus on their studies to excel in life.
He said bicycles on their own have no bearing on quality education if students do not commit their time to studies.
Speaking on behalf of other students, Anastazia Maseko, said the bicycles came at the right time when most students in the community were discouraged by long distances to school.
About 2 200 bicycles are to be distributed in 22 secondary schools in the two districts. n