**Saturday Star** Former Pakati Student – Fatimah Baye

I have recently had contact from Fatimah Baye, a former student of both Pakati schools. The surname was familiar to me, as I do remember at least two students from my time at the Secondary school in 1989. James Baye and Rita Baye were both in the Form 3 class I taught that year, and according to Fatimah, they are indeed relatives of hers. Sadly, I heard only last year that Rita passed away some time ago. I understand that James is living in Harare, and I am hoping to make contact with him soon.

Here is Fatimah’s story….starting at the Primary school

“I’m from Chinhoyi village (not far from Pakati Primary school), and I started learning at Pakati Primary in 2007 when I was in grade 5. During that time Mr Mushangwe was the Head, unfortunately now he is no longer with us. I was taught by Mr Maruhla, Mr Kupara and Mr Jury, and they helped me a lot. At Pakati I enjoyed being in the school music choir, and I enjoyed playing volleyball games. I still remember when I was in grade 7 in 2009 we reached the District level playing volleyball and I was among the selected members.

Mr Kupara during lockdown at Pakati Primary school

Next stop…Secondary school

Then in 2010 I started my education at Pakati Secondary school, where I also enjoyed playing volleyball. I was taught by many teachers there, including Mr Chifaka (the current Head), Mrs Katonha, Mr Chizenya, Mr Magabaza, Mrs Vanhuvaone, not forgetting my Fashion and Fabrics teacher, Mrs Mwaashidzana.

Being at Pakati was very exciting for me, as I learnt a lot of things there. The thing I liked the most at Pakati is that in my year, I was the the only one who passed Fashion and Fabrics. I think it was just that I liked the subject very much, so I used much of my time doing that which I enjoyed most.

The most funny moments I still remember is that when we were at school school during lunchtime I and my 3 friends we would ask anyone we knew with their garden nearer to the school, and we then went to garden to eat some mangoes, guavas and sugarcane. Then one other day my friends decided to go by themselves after lunch, and the owner of the garden came to school scolding them and she reported to the head that they were stealing her guavas and stepping on her maize. Those friends of mine were embarrassed in front of the whole school, lucky enough for me I wasn’t among them that day😁.

The other thing is that during the general work time I and my friends we would go and hide in the fashion block sewing our garments while others are working….

What next…?

I completed my ordinary level at Pakati in 2013, and I attained 8 subjects. I went to a teachers college in 2017, and I completed last year in November. Now am looking for a job. I am not yet married, but am at home in Chitungwuza (a large suburb on the edge of Harare) waiting for deployment to a school. That, so far, is my story.”

Other news…

Many thanks to Fatimah for sharing her story with us! We do have at least one other story in the pipeline. In addiition, the next Chapters in Pauline Machengo’s tales of life in Cape Town, South Africa are coming soon. Schools across Zimbabwe are beginning to prepare for return to classes under new Covid-19 rules for PPE, hygene and social distancing to keep staff and students safe. As I get information from the 2 Pakati schools, I will update on here as usual.

The main reasons for setting up Friends of Pakati have not changed. However this year’s vision has further developed our aims to help their students. In order to do that, to meet those aims, we need more funds. If you or anyone you know can help us, please donate at http://gofundme.com/friends-of-pakati or using our PayPal link https://www.paypal.com/paypalme/my/settings?flow=cmV0dXJuVXJsPS9teWFjY291bnQvc2V0dGluZ3MmY2FuY2VsVXJsPS9teWFjY291bnQvc2V0dGluZ3M= both links are also on our Fundraising page – https://friendsofpakati.com/fundraising/ Thank you👍


My name is Chris Walker, and between January 1989 and September 1991 I worked, through VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas), at Pakati Secondary School in Murehwa South district in Zimbabwe. I was a Maths teacher for 2 years, the Acting Head for the last 8 months there. I have also taught in Botswana & the UK, had 4 years working for VSO, and have been a Civil Servant in Bradford since 2005.

One thought on “**Saturday Star** Former Pakati Student – Fatimah Baye

  1. Well done Fatimah! I hope you get the much awaited placement at a school of your choice. Despite the negatives of Covid-19, chances are that the teacher to student ratio could be revised for purposes of social distancing, thereby resulting in the creation of more opportunities through recruitment of more teachers!

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