Number of schools vandalised horrifying – Angie Motshekga

Minister says 183 schools have been broken into or set alight since lockdown

Minister Angie Motshekga condems vandalising of schools during Coronavirus COVID-19 lockdown

13 April 2020

The Minister of Basic Education Mrs. Angie Motshekga is horrified at the alarming number of schools which have been vandalized and damaged since the COVID-19 lockdown began.

Three schools were broken into in last 24 hours in KwaZulu-Natal and expensive learning equipment stolen from the. EThekwini Primary in Durban is the latest in a string of schools that have been damaged in recent weeks. The latest burglary happened last night.

This brings to 183 the number of school vandalized around the country since the COVID-19 Lockdown was put in place. Gauteng has reported 55 schools vandalized, Mpumalanga 72, North West 7 schools and KZN 2.

Basic Education Minister Motshekga has condemned the incidents of vandalism, burglary and destruction of schools across several provinces. The Minister is working with her counterpart, Police Minister Bheki Cele get to the bottom of these incidents.

“It is quite disheartening that criminal elements in our communities could destroy the infrastructure of their own children with such apparent impunity. I am in constant touch with the Minister of Police, and with the assistance of the State Intelligence Forces, we are following leads to the immediate arrest and prosecution of every single criminal responsible,” said Minister Motshekga

She said communities were supposed to be caretakers of the infrastructure that government had put in place for the education of children.

“It is extremely disappointing for criminals, who are part of the community, to randomly destroy the same infrastructure meant to provide decent spaces of learning and teaching meant for our children”, said Minister Motshekga. The Minister has urged community members to assist the police to identify the culprits, and not to buy items stolen from schools.

“These criminals must be reported to the police immediately. Let us work together to safeguard the future of our children by exposing these criminal elements,” she said.

The learners from these schools will be the hardest hit as there could be delays in the implementation of the curriculum recovery plan when school finally reopen. Members of the community are urged to be on the look-out for people vandalizing schools or any public property.

Issued by Elijah Mhlanga on behalf of Department of Basic Education, 13 April 2020