Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra on Thursday said educational emergency in FATA had started yielding results as 143,000 students had been enrolled in public sector educational institutes across the tribal areas in 2017.
Speaking at the launch ceremony of enrollment drive in FATA at the Governor’s House, Peshawar, Jhagra said the figures indicated the will of parents across FATA to educate their children.
FATA Education Director Hashim Khan, FATA Social Sector Secretary Yousaf Raheem, FATA Education Additional Director, heads of UNDP and UNICEF and officials of FATA Secretariat attended the ceremony.
Lauding the efforts of UNICEF and UNDP, Jhagra said: “With the help of these donor agencies, education campaign will be a success.” The governor also distributed free books and bags among students. ““There is no dearth of talent among FATA students. They can compete at all levels, and we are putting all efforts ensuring equal education opportunities for the people of FATA at par with other progressive areas,” he added
He said education was imperative for the socio-economic development of the country and it would be considered a top priority. “To make Pakistan developed and sovereign, we have to educate every child throughout the country”, he said. The KP governor said the main goal of the education emergency was to bring all children of FATA to mainstream schools and resolved to leave no stone unturned to get 100 percent children enrolled in schools across FATA.
Jhagra also distributed certificates to position holders, congratulating them for continuing their education in adverse circumstances. He hoped the students would maintain focus on education and bring a good name to not only FATA, but also Pakistan.
Talking to newsmen separately, FATA Education Director Hashim Khan said a total of 200,000 students had been enrolled in public and private schools across the tribal areas, however an alarming dropout rate of 60 percent at the primary level was a real impediment to progress.
Khan said approximately 400,000 children remained out of schools, either owing to a lack of basic facilities or displacement of population from the region.