Mutharika statement at the commission on financing Global Education

His Excellency the President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika has urged member states of the United Nations to seriously consider financing global education.
Below is his full statement:

“I am very pleased to co-host this very important meeting on the United Nations International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity.

Let me also thank the Rt. Honourable Gordon Brown for inviting me to co-chair this event.

Financing global education is a serious cause to which we must dedicate ourselves. We have an urgent task before us because an entire generation of children all over the world is waiting for the outcome of our actions.

As we speak:
• 250 million children and youth are out of school;
• Millions are not learning despite being in school;
• 800 million Youths will not have basic secondary level skills if things remain the same by 2030;

The consequences of such large numbers receiving poor or no education is scaring. Soon or later, these children will return to haunt our economies as destructive consumers. We need to invest in them now so that they become productive labour forces of our economies.

Let it never be doubted. We will always pay the cost of failing to educate our children. There is always a cost of not educating someone. Education is the foundation of socio-economic development in every country. But let me urge nations to invest in balanced education. We must encourage Member States to invest in the trinity of education, that is: knowledge, character and skills.

We must prioritise skills education as a means of empowering human societies, including women, the youth and persons with disabilities. At the same time, we create skilled labour societies that are equipped to generate industrial growth. This is what we need to spur sustainable economic growth in developing countries.

In the case of Africa, there is a general consensus that Africa needs to industrialise. But we need to create skilled labour societies who must be indigenous productive drivers of our economies.

Skills education will demand more resources. Already, the education sector is already in a critical need given the figures outlined above. In some parts of the world, populations are growing at alarming proportions.

The need for resources is more urgent now more than ever. We need to address SDG4 with urgency.

The International Finance Facility for Education as part of the international financial architecture for addressing SDG 4. This Facility is an assured means to help all countries improve outcomes in education.

We are thankful for the positive signals of support we have begun to receive from various institutions. We are grateful to the World Bank’s $75 billion replenishment of this financing facility targeting low income countries.

We commend the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and the World Bank for their Joint Statement and commitment to support this Facility.

But we urge Governments, the private sector and civil society to join the spirit of mobilizing resources and investing in education. This is our shared responsibility.
I conclude by recalling what one African scholar (Frantz Fanon) said. He said, “Each generation must discover its mission, fulfill it or betray it….”

Our mission as a generation is to educate every child born. Betraying this mission is betraying an entire next generation. We cannot betray our children because we will have nothing to show for our existence.

I thank you for your attention”.