Parliament, Tuesday, 14 April 2020 – The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education, Ms Bongiwe Mbinqo-Gigaba, has noted with grave concern the great number of schools that have been vandalised during the national lockdown period.
“Our country is going through a crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Resources have already been redirected to address the challenges caused by the pandemic, including financial resources. Now schools will have to be repaired as criminal elements in our communities saw an opportunity to destroy much-needed resources that our learners will need once the lockdown is lifted,” said Ms Mbinqo-Gigaba.
According the reports, 183 schools across the country have been the target of vandals, arsonists and burglars. In some cases, equipment has been stolen or entire schools burnt down. All schools were closed on 18 March when the President declared the lockdown. Learners were given work to do over the lockdown period in an effort to make up for some of the school hours.
Ms Mbinqo-Gigaba called on communities (to the extent that they are able given the directive to stay at home and stay safe) to be vigilant and to contact the authorities immediately if they notice anything untoward. “Schools ensure that our children receive an education to enable them to make a better future. They therefore benefit of the whole community.
“We further call on law enforcement agencies to deal decisively with such criminals should they be apprehended,” Ms Mbinqo-Gigaba added.
ISSUED BY THE PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON BASIC EDUCATION, MS BONGIWE MBINQO-GIGABA.
For media enquiries or interviews with the Chairperson, please contact the committee’s Media Officer:
Name: Rajaa Azzakani (Ms)
Tel: 021 403 8437
Cell: 081 703 9542
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