Vice President Dr. Saulos Chilima on Saturday attended a graduation ceremony for form four students at Mtendere secondary school in Dedza where he encouraged the outgoing students to be courageous and calculative when making decisions.

Chilima, a former student at the school, said decision making is an important aspect in life which determines success or failure for an individual or for an institution.

“As secondary school graduates and young men, you need to make sound decisions about your own life. Bad decisions will make you fail in life while good ones will make you succeed,” he said.

The Veep encouraged the students to decide on what goals they want to achieve in life and work hard to achieve them.

“Do not change your decisions because others are not doing what you have decided. You have to be confident and decisive in life. Do not fall in the category of people who choose to be decisively indecisive,” Chilama advised.

He also advised the students to be risk takers saying it is his ability to take risks that made him become vice president for the country.

“Take risks no matter how enormous the consequences are. Usually, when you have planned and decided on the kind of risk you want to take, the outcome is always positive,” Chilima said.

He recalled: “Last time I stood here to speak during a previous graduation, I was managing director at Airtel Malawi. I decided to take a big risk. I made a decision to quit the job and join politics.

“Most people got afraid and angry on my behalf. But, I was decided and had to take the risk.”

Recounting his memories of secondary school days, in the late 80s, Chilima said life was tough for him and other students due to mobility challenges as there was no reliable mode of transport from the M1 tarmarc road to Mtendere secondary school campus.

He revealed to the amusement of the students that he used to foot for a distance of 11 kilometres from Chimbiya trading centre in the district to the school campus.

In his speech, head teacher for the school, Arthur Ganiza, highlighted some of the challenges the school is facing. He cited shortage of teaching and learning materials and requested the vice president to mobilize his fellow alumni to intervene on the issue.

Speaking on behalf of fellow students, outgoing head boy for the school Emmanuel Namangale said they are happy to have gone through the school that produced the county’s vice president and said they will work hard to pass their examinations with flying colours.

Chilima donated football, basketball and volley ball kits and promised the school a minibus. He also promised to mobilize his fellow former students to equip the school computer laboratory with computers and furniture.

The vice president awarded the school’s best academic performer, George Yafera, with K100, 000 cash. He further promised to send one laptop to George and the other one laptop to his runner’s up.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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