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mulonga.net >> Media >> Text >> Interviews by Theo Sianyuka and Isaac Munzaba
Interviews by Theo Sianyuka and Isaac Munzaba
Text
Wednesday, 23 July 2003 20:54

Radio Interviews
with Isaac Munzaba, National FM, ZBC
and Theo Sianyuka, Tonga.Online Project
23 July 2003
Topic: Youth and Computers

INTERVIEW 1

...We all know that books are scarce and expensive in the country these days, so they go to the computers and download whatever they want and print out, then it becomes a cheap book.

WHAT IS DOWNLOADING?

Downloading is looking for whatever you what to find in the comp. There are buttons which you press and you gather the whole information, then you print out, then the information will come on the paper.

HOW DO YOU WORK, WHAT ARE THE CHARGES?

Our charges are low. Basic training for computers, learning how to operate, switch on and off is $2000 for 20 hours or two weeks. And then computer use is $150 per hour, it's very cheap, even cheaper than buying a bottle of Coke. Registration for email is Z$300. Internet time is $20 [per minute].

ARE THE YOUTH COMING TO USE THE COMPUTERS?

Yes, but there are some youth who do not afford to pay the $ 2000 for basic computer training, last year Project paid half of the training, then the children paid the other half. By so doing some of them managed the other half. Those who have not come for training are limited by money, otherwise they all wanted to be computer literate. The youth in Binga, I can say maybe half of them, they now know how to switch on and off the computer. It is no longer a new thing in Binga.

I STILL HAVE A FEW QUESTIONS. YOU MENTIONED SOMETHING ABOUT COOKING OKRA - HOW WOULD YOU GO ABOUT IF FROM THE COMPUTER?

Some people can't cook okra, they either put more water of less bicarbonate of soda, they don't know the quantities. Such people can go to the search engines, one is called Google Search, you type the word OKRA, it will open the right page and follow the steps everything will be explained.

IS IT TRUE? DOES THE COMPUTER GIVE YOU THE RECIPE TO PREPARE OKRA?

Yes!

THAT'S WONDERFUL! I AM VERY HAPPY THAT PEOPLE WHO DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO SOMETHING CAN LEARN HOW TO DO IT. COMPUTERS CAN DO THAT! (Isaac)

HAVING THE COMPUTERS, HOW DO YOU THINK THEY WILL HELP THE YOUTH?

Youth are being helped by reading, searching for schoolwork, searching the subjects like geography, maths. In my own words I can say a comp is a teacher which does not talk like a human being. If you ask it something, it will show you everything you want.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR COMPUTER TRAINING FROM THE START TO FINISH?

Computer training doesn't end. You find lots of things you want to learn. For someone to have confidence that he can sit in the office by a computer on her/his own, it takes almost 2 weeks or 20 hours, you will know how to type, save, print etc.

IS IT TRUE, TWO WEEKS ONLY? OH! WHAT ABOUT THE TEACHERS, HOW DO THEY USE THE CENTRE?

Yes two weeks is basically enough. The teachers at Binga High School are happy because the computers helps them. They also go to the Search engines, they search for whatever teaching aids they want. Every thing is found in the computer.

IN TODAY'S DEVELOPING WORLD, HOW DO COMPUTERS HELP YOU?

Computers help us to communicate with people from very far, like we have friands and relatives overseas staying some are learning overseas, we can communicate with them within a short time. We also use the computers for looking or employment, and even lyrics of songs.

FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO KNOW THE WORDS OF THE SONGS, YOU SAY THEY CAN GO TO THE COMPUTERS AND FIND THE RIGHT WORDS FOR THE SONGS?

Yes, like from the radio there are songs which are sometimes played so for someone to catch the words it is difficult sometimes. So you go to the computer, connect on internet and look for the words of the songs. Like for us here in Binga, using the computers and internet it helps us to sell our crafts, fish, so we go to the computers to market our products.

SO YOU CAN FIND CUSTOMERS ON THE INTERNET?

We display our crafts on the Internet. It is helping us because you can't afford to get on a ship, fly or sometimes even getting on a bus going to look for customers overseas or within. The computers have cut our journeys short.

DO GIRLS COME TO THR COMPUTER OR MAYBE THEYARE AFRAID?

Yes, girls do come to use the centre, even older people. We know that older people can not read or write so they use the youth on their behalf.

WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY SAYING THE YOUTH - IS IT BOYS AND GIRLS, IS IT ONLY FOR THEM?

No, it is everybody, it doesn't matter whether you are old or young, it is access for all.

WHO ELSE DO YOU WORK WITH?

I work with Penny Yon, she is the programme manager and I am her Asst. I sometimes do admin work.

WHAT WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT CAN YOU LEAVE FOR THE YOUTH INSIDE AND OUTSIDE BINGA?

I encourage the youth to train in computers. The computer is your teacher your mother, your brother. It teaches you everything you want to know in life, looking for jobs, learning at school. Even looking for different things you can use in everyday life.

IN OUR YOUTH PROGRAMME HERE, WE ARE WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE WORKING FOR THEIR AREA. THEOPHORAH SIANYUKA AND PENNY YON ARE WORKING IN BINGA FOR THE TONGA.ONLINE PROJECT. IT IS VERY ENCOURAGING THAT THE YOUTH ARE COMING INTO THE CENTRE EVERY DAY, AND THAT'S WHY WE ARE TELLING EVERY YOUTH TO GET INVOLVED IN THE COMPUTERS SO THAT THEY SHOULDN'T GET INVOLVED IN DRINKING BEER, STEALING, BUT TO USE THE COMPUTERS.


INTERVIEW 2

This year the people of Siachilaba worked and sold their crafts. The craftswomen got over $300 000 to share amongst themselves. We are happy here in Binga because we have got malala. We have got strong trees which we use for crafts, for example we have got musanta, blood tree, mwii, nutritious fruit tree and many more People from all over the country come here to Binga to buy our crafts, e.g. from Victoria Falls, they come to buy here in Binga, So who so ever buys from them like so the tourists think those good crafts come from Vic Falls, not knowing that they are Binga products. At the Information Technology Centre we have got computer science teachers Stanford Muchineripi and Blessmore Siasweka .

During the holiday, the youth make their crafts and they sell them through the internet, showing the whole world, searching for markets. So the tourists will come to Binga because they will have seen on the Internet products. Computers they help us to display and find market So you can even write to your customers and tell them what you have here in Binga. So we are happy about the computers. We Binga people are very lucky . Computers will also go to Siachilaba Primary which is Headed by Emmanuel Sinampande and Siansundu Secondary School

BEFORE YOUR GO, WE WANT TO ASK SOME QUESTIONS. YOU SAID THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO MAKE CRAFTS AND WEAVE BASKETS. WHO ARE THEY?

They are the old women of Siachilaba whom have identified in that area. These women who weave nice baskets, nice crafts. Us the youth we must learn from these women. I think they should teach us because our culture is dying out. So there are some(apprentices) little girls who are being taught by these women. Because we know that our culture is dying bit by bit, so we want them to know what and how our culture is. We know those women are becoming older every day. Also the youth weave baskets and crafts.

WHAT FOR?

We would use them in the fields, we put in seeds when it,s planting time, and they wouldn't be very neat. So our parents are happy about

YOU SAID SOMETHING ABOUT A RENEWABLE RESOURCE,IT IS AN ENGLISH WORD,CAN YOU SIMPLIFY ?

Our renewable resource malala, doesn't get finished. Even if a big fire or flood comes, it won't go away. If the heavy downfall (rain ) even if it never rains for some seasons, the tree will be germinating and ever green, we cut malala all year round. We use malala to make hats for the sun, mats, and baskets. They grow on the riverbanks and have got long, long roots which get water underground.
The youth shouldn't listen to people who tell them wrong things they should go ahead using the computers. Here in Binga we are lucky we have Zambezi River, malala, strong wood which doesn't crack (which we curve pestle and mortars, doors etc and so let us use these computers and earn a living,
We are very lucky here in Binga, we have the hot springs. It is found at Binga Rest Camp. You can even cook an egg from the hot springs, It looks like water boiling in a pot. This is one of God's wonders here in Binga. Fish is ever available any time. When the doctors tells us to eat white meat, we don't go to the shops to buy the expensive white meat, we go to the river and fish. We also have got Zakalanda (the miracle tree), we eat its leaves, we prepare soap with the fruit, we eat the roots, the whole tree is useful.

HOW DO THE ROOTS HELP YOU?

The roots and leaves are dried and grounded.They are mixed with porridge,it helps malnutrition children and kwashiorkor. We use the powder leaves when cooking soup or thickening

NOW IT'S THE END OF OUR PROGRAMME. WHAT CAN YOU SAY TO THE YOUTH AND PARENTS OF TODAY?

To tell our parents to teach us the old things they used to do, how they to grew up, what they used to eat, and do in their free time. So that we can copy, It is like they lived in paradise Here in Binga we have old, old people but they are very strong. They can fetch water from the river, they can dance, they can grind using the stone. In the Simonga group we have got old people who are involved. Are you aware that Simonga cannot be presented on a stage, so they will be running around dancing. They are strong because they are eat this miracle tree and their old tricks which we want to know and apply.

I AM THANKING AGAIN PENNY YON AND THEO SIANYUKA FROM TONGA.ONLINE PROJECT. WE ARE ENCOURAGING THEM TO WORK VERY HARD FOR THE PROJECT, BECAUSE THEY ARE WORKING HARD FOR YOUR AREA


INTERVIEW 3

WHOM ARE YOU GREETING? WHAT'S YOUR NAME?

My name is Lilian Sibelo.

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU ABOUT THE COMPUTERS.

These lessons they helped me a lot, We were not aware of the importance of computers until Auntie Theo talked to us and explained how computers can help us in future.

WHERE DO YOU LEARN?

I am at Binga High, I am upper Six.

WHAT SUBJECTS DO YOU DO BESIDES COMPUTERS?

Geography, Accounting and Business Management.

HOW DO YOU MIX YOUR NORMAL LESSONS AND COMPUTER LESSONS?

I will use the computer to go to Excel because I am doing accounting.

WE HAVE BLESSMORE S, COMPUTER TEACHER AND OBVIOUSLY, THEO S. YOU ARE BACK AGAIN THEO, WHAT DO YOU ENCOURAGE FOR WOMEN TODAY?

I am encouraging women to use computers, they mustn't think that they are for men only. Women can also use them in their homes.

OK THEO, WHO ARE THE OTHER GIRLS USING THE COMPUTERS TODAY?

Today there was Lilian in the ITC because she is researching for her A Levels, she was the only girl today.

THERE'S A BOY AGAIN, WE WILL SEE WHERE HE COMES FROM.

My name is Lloyd Sibanda. I started using computers last year. I like to play games and I was involved in the Children's Week during the holidays.

THERE'S A BOY WHO'S DOING GRAPHICS.

My name is Danayi Chiv, I am doing graphics here at he centre. It is helping me because the gift I was given by God, I should uplift it using computers.

WHAT IS YOUR GIFT?

I was given the gift of art.

HOW DO YOU THINK ART WILL HELP YOU IN LIFE?

I can use the computers to do my posters, design logos for companies, advertising.

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM BZ. WHAT CAN YOU TELL US TODAY, YOU OLD YOUTHS?

The next is a boy doing Upper Sixth, Lawrence Mudimba.

YOU ARE DOING UPPER SIXTH?

Yes.

WHAT CAN YOU TELL THE YOUTH LIKE YOU

I tell them to train in computers while they are still at primary level, because computers are being used everywhere in the world every day. In offices, even here at school we have computers. It is helping us here at school, typing and using internet also.

WHAT IS INTERNET? IN YOUR OWN WORDS AS AN A LEVEL STUDENT TELL US WHAT IS INTERNET?

It's like a program, where you can find news or information on the internet, like people living in other countries, you can even find football news on internet.