Today, the DA engaged with the MEC for Education in Limpopo, Polly Boshielo seeking her urgent intervention to assist over 3 000 stranded learners, attending seven schools around Zebediela, who are unable to go to school due to the ongoing service delivery protests in their respective villages.
Residents from the villages of Madisha’aleolo , Madisha’a ditoro and Motsetsereng in Lepelle-Nkumpi are demanding tarred road. As a result, they have barricaded roads with rocks and burning tyres.
The protests started before elections, where residents asked the Roads Agency Limpopo (RAL) , Premier’s office and COGHSTA to make a commitment on the tarring of the road. Instead, they were given a run around upon which they decided close all in schools in the area until their demands were met.
It is sad to note that residents have been complaining about the same road for over three years but their pleas have been ignored by the uncaring ANC government.
As a result, all services in these villages have been halted due to the violent nature of the protests.
It’s clear that the so called “renewal program” was just an election catchphrase to get the ANC elected. It was never about the welfare of the people or to improve service delivery.
Many learners are currently herding cattle, goats and sheep, whilst their peers across the country are learning in schools.
The affected schools are as follows:
A few weeks ago, over 3 500 learners around Atok in Tubatse were also stranded for weeks due to the similar volatile service delivery protests in seven villages demanding basic service delivery.
The DA objects to the notion of closing schools by residents due to lack of services in the villages as we believe that there are other avenues that can be utilised to raise grievances.
The ANC has clearly failed residents in these communities. Children should however not be used as collateral damage and prevented from attending class and getting an education.
Depriving children of an opportunity to learn is a violation of their rights as enshrined in the Constitution.
The DA urges MEC Boshielo to give urgent attention to this issue and engage with these residents immediately to ensure that learners return to school while the issues faced by the community are being addressed.
We look forward to a timely conclusion of this impasse and the resumption of classes as a matter of urgency.