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POTRAZ gives lifeline to bright student Vella Misodzi

Courtesy of POTRAZ, Vella Misodzi (in school uniform) walks with an artificial leg

True to its philanthropic nature and as part of its corporate social responsibility initiative, the Postal and Telecommunication Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) was today at Gosha Secondary School to provide support to Vella Misodzi, a young and intelligent girl who was amputated after an electrocution accident.

Dr. Gift Machengete, the POTRAZ Director-General said prior to his organisation’s gesture, Vella’s story was a sad one, a story of shattered dreams, a story of lost hope.

“We wish to turn that around now and make it a story about kindness and hope. Hope for a brighter future – hope for a certain and secure tomorrow,” Dr. Machengete said.

Vella was electrocuted in 2015 when she was in Grade 7 and had to have her leg and hand amputated as a result of the accident. Due to this unfortunate circumstance, she failed to continue with the school as she could not walk and required special care and attention. Also coming from a deprived background, Vella was lacking in a number of things, which would have otherwise made her life easier under her condition.

 

When POTRAZ heard of her story, there was no debate that she would become one of its beneficiaries under the Authority’s Corporate Social Responsibility Program. POTRAZ engaged specialists to assess her needs so that she may return to school and arrangements were made for an artificial limb to be made for her. The Authority proceeded to pay her school fees for one year and also bought her uniforms to ensure she returns to school once her limb was supplied.

“I am happy to note that Vella is now attending school and I am informed she is coping very well as she turns a new lease of life. To complement our support for the student, we are here to hand over some groceries as well as other essentials to ensure her schooling goes unhindered. Ladies and gentlemen, this month POTRAZ joined the rest of the world in celebrating Girls in ICT Day on 22 April, where the focus was on encouraging girls and young women to take up ICT studies and careers as the world was going digital and our very existence would be hinged on ICTs.

“We believe ICT studies and careers would prop up the girl child to be at par with her male counterpart in terms of emancipation and ultimately in terms of their contributions to economic development. Today I would like to encourage not only Vella and her fellow female learners to take up studies in ICTs but everyone at this school – All boys and girls should consider careers in ICTs. After all, ICTs will provide jobs of the future,” Dr. Machengete said.

Dr. Machengete said accounting jobs will be done by accounting algorithms and not people. Algorithms would be responsible for the justice system and there would no longer be a need for lawyers and judges. Robots will perform medical procedures with way too much precision that surgeons will no longer be needed. Google and other search engines will provide so much knowledge there will no longer be a need to consult doctors when one falls ill. Even the need for teachers and formal learning will fall by the wayside and gadgets will perform that function.

‘It will be a world of robotics, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality. That world is already here and all of you students should not be left behind. It is by that token, that apart from assisting Vella today, as the country`s ICT regulator, we also wish to assist the school and all learners here with ICT gadgets as well as with Internet connectivity for the next eight (8) months until 31 December 2021. This is to ensure your ride on the digital ship and so that you will sail along with others in the digital world. We need to make sure we give you that heard start – that advantage to compete with others for the jobs in the future I have just alluded to,” Dr. Machengete said.

 

He added that the Authority, under its e-learning program, has already donated ten (10) computers to Gosha School but what was proving to be a challenge is Internet connectivity, which POTRAZ has now provided for. In addition, the Authority handed over a multi-purpose printer to the school as well as a desktop computer for use by Administration staff. Twenty-five (25) branded bookcases were donated to the school for use by students to carry their books to school.

“We hope the donation will go a long way in promoting the use of ICTs at the school in line with our mandate. Allow me to conclude by extending hearty thanks to the Minister for State for Mashonaland East Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Hon Munzverengi for finding time off her busy schedule to grace this occasion. Your presence Honourable Minister has given this event an executive flavor and an aura of importance – thank you very much. To Vella and all her fellow learners here I say good luck and POTRAZ is always here for you,” the ICT doyen added.

 

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende