HARARE, Feb 5 — Zimbabwe’s Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Dr Lazarus Dokora, has declared that the government does not intend to dish out condoms in schools and called on parents who are concerned about the sexual activities of their children to do so instead.

Debate has been raging in social media circles after rumours surfaced that the government has announced its intention to make condoms available in schools in response to concerns that children are having sexual relations at an early age.

However, Dr Dokora told the National Assembly during the question and answer session here Wednesday that the government would not be dishing out condoms to schoolchildren. “As a society we have created social institutions that we call schools to nurse positive attitudes to prepare them for adulthood. No condoms in schools,” he said as his voice was drowned by noise that was being made by members of Parliament.

Dr Dokora said parents were a critical part of a child’s education and should be intimately involved in the process. The government would not therefore back down to pressures to give schoolchildren condoms in schools.

Dr Dokora said parents who were concerned about provision of condoms for their children should instead include them when they packed their children’s school bags.

“We do not separate the parent from education. There should be no expectation that the school system must deliver condoms to school children,” he added.

Opposition party Movement for Democratic Change MP Dr Ruth Labode said it was critical that sex education be taught in schools. “We have to acknowledge that early sex is rampagnt in schools,” she said.

Dr Labode attracted the wrath of Dr Dokora when she said high number of cases of sex were linked to low pass rates in some schools. The education minister dismissed the insinuation, urging the legislator to carry out proper research on the matter.