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The forbidden fruit
Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU)
June 29, 2010

Like the Biblical fruit that Adam and Eve were prohibited to munch by Jehovah in the Garden of Eden, cadetship must not be an avenue for students who cannot afford, to get the required amount of financial resources to pay for their education. The government should not capitalize on students' poverty thereby creating slaves out of the intelligentsia. In addition, the poverty that has struck the masses today was not of their own making but was manufactured by the corrupt government of the yester years and that of today.

Cadetship bonds students who would have 'benefited' from the facility for the years similar to the duration of the programme that one has studied. This clause of the bonding contract has failed to pass the reasonable man's test as common sense cannot be applied to it. It does not matter whether the government has paid for your education for a single year or two but will be bonded for four years if your area of study is a four year programme.

According to the cadetship contract students are forced to work in the Public Service thereby violating the right to choose an employer of your own choice. Furthermore, it restricts one to work in Zimbabwe for an employer who is well-known for paying paltry salaries i.e. the government of the Republic of Zimbabwe. The ill-advised government boasts about the cadetship being an apparatus to reduce brain drain, but alas the economic environment will force one to cross borders. Chinhoyi University of Technology has proved Mudenge the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education and cohorts wrong as they have embarked on a research on how best the syndrome of brain drain can be reduced as the cadetship has proved to be disastrous.

Under the cadetship scheme one is obliged to pay a third of his /her monthly earnings upon securing a job for a period that he/she will be bonded. This defies logic in the sense that one for instance earns US$3000 has to pay a US$1000 per month to the government whilst the later was paying US$350 for a semester which is four months, thus becoming daylight robbery by the government from its own citizens. To propound further it means that former students whose fees were paid by cadetship would pay different amounts depending on their monthly earnings despite acquiring the same benefits.

Mudenge lied that cadetship would cater for college fees and other learning related expenses, whilst it caters for tuition only with the student being required to pay the additional fees charged by institutions. A student at the National University of Science and Technology in the faculty of commerce is charged US$375 in total but cadetship will only pay US$300 with the student being required to pay off the remaining balance of US$75.

The utterances made by Mbizvo in the Herald of 28 June 2010 amount to a vomit of nothingness, as he has proved to the students' community beyond reasonable doubt that he is an alien to the tertiary education fraternity. On average 7% of the students that apply for the cadetship receive the funds, it is surprising for someone expected to be a Permanent Secretary to make false alarms to the world that they are catering for 12000 University of Zimbabwe students. What is the total enrollment of that institution? The scheme is wrong in principle and lacks adequate funding.

ZINASU shall not heed to the malicious, frivolous and vexatious utterances made by Mbizvo which do not amount to anything near warnings but indicate extreme levels of desperation. The union shall proceed to advocate for the re-introduction of the revolving loan and grant scheme. The 'Learn now Pay back later' scheme should be adequately financed and properly implemented. ZINASU has relocated to 10 Hillary Drive, Emerald Hill in Harare

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