NICO Group, through NICO Foundation, and ICON Properties have laid a foundation stone for a double-storey classroom block at Mbayani Primary School in Blantyre.
At the time, the cost of putting up a double-storey block holding four classrooms was MK100 million. Due to devaluation, the costs increased to MK 190 million and there was need to source more funds to build the school block. NICO Group added another MK40 million to the pledge and ICON Properties came in to fill the gap with the MK50 million donation.
Explaining why NICO Group made this donation, NICO Group Managing Director Vizenge Kumwenda, said the donation is within its values of being a responsible and responsive corporate citizen. He further disclosed that the projects’ commencement was awaiting approval from the Blantyre City Council as government schools in Malawi have always been one-storey structures.
“We are pleased that our request has now been approved and work has begun. Our target is to create an environment where students are able to learn while preventing the spread of diseases like CoVID-19 and Cholera,” Kumwenda explained.
Blantyre City Council Chief Executive Officer, Dennis Chinseu, commended NICO Group and ICON Properties for their commitment to developing various sectors including the education sector.
“We have been complaining about our students learning under trees, which was due to a high number of pupils per classroom. This will now be a story of the past. With the scarcity of land due to over-population in Blantyre Urban, NICO Group and ICON Properties have done commendable work – we really needed to start building modern classrooms to accommodate our learners in a good environment,” Chinseu said.
Senior Grouping Village Headman Magasa reiterated Chinseu’s remarks, adding that the classroom block has come at the right time as learners learning under trees are greatly affected by the rain.