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Pupils back at school after NWest protests

Johannesburg - North West pupils and teachers returned to school on Monday after violent protests, the premier said in a statement.

According to the provincial education department, 98 percent of pupils at schools in Bloemhof, Bodibe and Itsoseng reported for classes, premier Thandi Modise said.

Protests started in Boitumelong, near Bloemhof, last week.

Residents blocked the N12 and set alight a municipal office, community hall, and houses belonging to the mayor, two councillors and two officials. They also torched several businesses.

By Tuesday, the protest had spilled over to Coverdale in Christiana, where a community hall was torched.

Residents were demanding the removal of their entire municipal council and to fall under a different municipality.

Modise said the provincial government would follow up on all issues raised by the residents.

She said the schools' recovery plan should ensure that learning and teaching time lost does not affect the province's plan to claim the top spot in the matric results at the end of the year.

“The executive council intervention team will also engage the Khunotsoane protesters outside Zeerust where schooling was still affected, at Khunotsoane Primary and Motsaalore Secondary School as roads were still blocked,” Modise said. - Sapa

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