DA calls for SAPS deployment to schools across the country following vandalism spike
18 April 2020
The Democratic Alliance (DA) calls on the Department of Basic Education to work closely with the South African Police Service (SAPS) to ensure maximum visibility of the police at our schools during the Covid-19 lockdown.
This follows the Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga, confirming that 397 schools have now been vandalised across the country since the lockdown. Mpumalanga, Gauteng, Western Cape and North West are the hardest hit with each having more than 50 schools affected.
The DA strongly condemns these acts of vandalism.
There is an urgent need to put preventative measures in place to protect schools from being soft targets for criminals. This is because opportunists and criminals are taking advantage of this lockdown and it is therefore critical that the we have increased police visibility at schools during this time.
The Minister confirmed that the damage at schools have primarily been caused by vandalism and theft. It is also telling that perpetrators have now started to target nutrition centres where food items are stored. It speaks to the increased desperation for food during this lockdown.
These acts, however, will cause immeasurable damage to the functioning of schools and on the education of learners post the lockdown. It is, therefore, critically important for Minister Motshekga to engage Police Minister Bheki Cele to find urgent solutions which will enable the SAPS to patrol high-risk schools.
Issued by Nomsa Marchesi, DA Shadow Minister of Basic Education, 18 April 2020