Zimdef says ploughs $15m into Stem programme

THE Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund (Zimdef) has for the past two years invested more than $15 million in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programme, as part of efforts to develop human capital for industrial development, an official has said.


Fredrick Mandizvidza
Fredrick Mandizvidza

Zimdef chief executive officer Fredrick Mandizvidza told delegates at a STEM business luncheon in Bulawayo on Monday that government had invested significant amount of resources into the human capital development.

“We have invested quite some significant amount of resources. In 2016, we invested $7,4 million. In 2017, we have invested $7, 8 million and the total so far invested into STEM is $15,1 million and these are government resources coming from industry,” he said.

Mandizvidza said the money was being contributed by industry.

“Your industry has contributed this amount of money so that we have a total of 10 854 students that are being supported today. These are not supported because they come from poor background. No, the initiative is a merit-based programme,” he said.

Speaking at the same event, Higher and Tertiary Education deputy minister Godfrey Gandawa said there was need for critical human resources development in Zimbabwe.

“The world over, the economies are now driven by knowledge, research and development. We are now living in a digital economy and if as Zimbabweans we don’t adapt to it, then we will never industrialise or modernise,” he said.

Gandawa said the ministry should take a lead in terms of modernising and industrialisation.

“We have taken upon ourselves to transform Zimbabwe into a power house within which a cyber-physical space must change in the next 15 to 30 years. We need to start to plan now to transform,” he said.

“When we embarked on the STEM programme, we were looking at reaping results from 10 years from now, but we then need to focus that the proper industrialisation of this country will take 15 to 30 years”.

Gandawa said there was need for the country to be able to know what are the critical areas that government needed to invest in terms of human capital development.

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  1. It is not the number of students that matter in the success of stem but the quality of the trainning that they will receive. If say those figures were to be believed; what sort of education are those guys getting? The teachers are not properly trained with very poor conditions of service; the laboratories are mostly non existent perhaps except only for the label ‘laboratory’ on the entrance. Where labs exist there are poorly equipped..so what type of graduate will you get…KKKK they say if you pay peanuts you get monkeys!

  2. Command Education!!!!! Kwa!!! Watch out Chiwenga will deal with u!! Kwaaaa

  3. The Zimdef funds have been looted BEFORE by the proponents of STEM. How sure are we that they will not abuse the fund again. The fund should be entrusted to safe hands.

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