The ANC’s attack on schools. It never stops, does it?

Chris Patterson | Jul 04, 2022
Accountability is not cancelled by moving the goal posts. Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga, has proposed amendments to would allow her to remove the deadlines previously set by her Department to replace pit latrines and provide basic services such as water and electricity.

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The ANC’s attack on schools. It never stops, does it?

Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga has proposed amendments to the Regulations Relating to Minimum Uniform Norms & Standards for Public School Infrastructure, which will, as highlighted by the Equal Education Law Centre and Equal Education, allow the Minister to remove the deadlines previously set by her Department to replace pit latrines and provide basic services such as water and electricity.

Moving the goal posts is not new: A National Planning Commission report, for example, found that the government’s National Development Plan: Vision 2030 goals were essentially unrealistic, and needed correction. It is not surprising, then, that the Minister has removed the deadlines in the education document, as they were also likely to be unrealistic. South Africans may never know the truth behind this decision, because the ANC does not seem to like accountability; why else would the Minister  accuse an NGO of trying to “dislodge” the government?

The point that needs to be conveyed is that this is routine behaviour for a government that does not acknowledge the role of public participation by stakeholders and individuals, a government that shows contempt for democratic engagement.

Education stakeholders, civil society, teachers and children deserve to know when their infrastructure will be improved, so that should the Department fail in its obligation to provide a suitable environment for learning, it can be held accountable for its failure. South Africans’ #FreedomtoLEARN depends on it.


Accountability is not cancelled by moving the goal posts.

A line from the open letter of resignation of former ANC member Mervyn Bennun sticks with me, and should with you too: “One consequence of this failure is that the South African educational system has created its own obscene image: a school learner drowning in faeces in a collapsed toilet.”

How many more of the young people who are South Africa’s future need to die as a result of such rank incompetence before the crisis in basic education is acknowledged by the Minister?

 


Cover image source available
here.

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