Western Cape Premier Helen Zille Photo: David Ritchie / African News Agency (ANA)
Cape Town - Premier Helen Zille received a hostile reception when trying to address disgruntled Khayelitsha pupils, teachers, parents and community organisations.

They gathered in Keizersgracht Street to march to the CBD, demanding immediate safety at schools in the township.

Schools in that area were shut down while some teachers participated in the gathering following a spate of burglary and armed robberies on school premises which occurred during the day. The latest burglary took place at Impendulo Primary School on August 5.

“We are saying enough is enough with unsafe schools. We want the Western Cape Education Department (WCED), Department of Community Safety and police to create an environment conducive to learning and teaching and stop playing the blame game,” said Funeka Qolo.

Joe Slovo Secondary School Grade 10 pupils Zukisani Solani and Cwenga Mlokoti said proper fencing was needed at their school as anyone could enter and exit. “We don’t only fear strangers who come into the school, but also fellow pupils who carry knives at school, as it has been two years since we were all searched for weapons and drugs,” said the pupils.

Thokozani Ncayiyana, chairperson for the school governing body at Usasazo Secondary School, in Khayelitsha, said: “As the residents and stakeholders, we are tired of empty promises from WCED and Department of Safety.”

WCED spokesperson Jessica Shelver said: “The WCED has engaged with various role-players to try to address the safety issues affecting our schools, including those in Khayelitsha. Many interventions have been plotted through a series of meetings. The WCED has focused on the schools and the principals (some of whom were also at the Sanco meeting).”

Police spokesperson Novela Potelwa said: “In the Khayelitsha area the local SAPS interacts with the Education Department officials on a continuous basis.”

Cape Times