Fund crunch hampering schools’ reconstruction in Nepal

Following the disastrous earthquake of 2015, the Nepali government has prepared a recovery road map in 2016 for the reconstruction of damaged infrastructure

Apr 23, 2021
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Following the disastrous earthquake of 2015, the Nepali government has prepared a recovery road map in 2016 for the reconstruction of damaged infrastructure. However, many school buildings in the Himalayan country still await funds to start reconstruction works. 

Authorities targeted the reconstruction of 9,072 schools from 31 districts, that had suffered damage in the earthquake. However, just 6,246 schools have been fully rebuilt while another 1,307 are under construction. The budget constraint left around 1500 school buildings without any works. 

“Lack of adequate budget and delay in the release of the needed budget is a major challenge in attaining the set goals,” Yadu Bikram Thapa, an officer at the education unit, was quoted as saying by The Kathmandu Post.

He said it is a challenge to arrange the budget for the 5,973 classrooms from 882 schools that need reconstruction,” Thapa added. It requires over $50 million. 

The government estimated $917 million to fund school reconstruction when the framework was prepared in 2016. The plans include constructing the schools in a holistic manner which included toilets, furniture, and other amenities. 

However, lack of funds is now leading to just erecting school buildings without any facilities. 

Furthermore, the government has dropped plans of reconstructing those schools reporting low enrollment. Officials are also now looking for other funding options. India in 2017 had announced providing around $1 billion for the overall reconstruction works in the country, including homes, educational, and culturally important buildings. 

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