Queen Elizabeth School cornered to release defaulting student’s results

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Harare school, Queen Elizabeth was on Tuesday forced to release Ordinary Level results for a student, after they had been withheld for non-payment of fees following the intervention of the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum.

Everson Mushava

The results were released after the forum’s lawyer, Kenias Shonhai had given the school a 48-hour ultimatum to do so or face legal action.

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“We are pleased to update you on the above issue. Kenias Shonhai, the lawyer representing the pupil was given her results. Shonhai has given (the named pupil) her results and she expressed joy that now she can proceed with her education,” the forum said yesterday.

In a letter dated February 15, Shonhai ordered the school to immediately release the pupil’s results and pursue legal action against her parents or guardian.

“We are hereby writing challenging the withholding of our client’s results as a way of forcing her parents to pay the outstanding fees,” part of the letter by Shonhai dated February 15 read.

“We are, therefore, instructed to demand as we hereby do the release of (the pupil’s) results with immediate effect and in any case within 48 hours from the date of receipt of this letter failure of which we are instructed to take legal action without any further notice to yourselves and you shall bear legal costs.”

Most schools countrywide have been accused of withholding results for pupils as a way of forcing the parents to clear outstanding fees.

Last week, Townsend Girls High in Bulawayo was forced to release results for two pupils after the intervention of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.

Shonhai said schools should resort to a legal way of recovering fees from the pupils or students, through their parents, not to expel, suspend or withhold pupils or students’ school results on the basis of non-payment of fees.