South Africa's young people must mobilise and start holding the government accountable, former education minister Barbara Hogan has said.

“Rather than holding marches, marches and marches, students need to find much more innovative ways of organising,” The Times on Tuesday quoted Hogan saying.

“If money is not flowing properly (in an education department), they need to go to the financial office and demonstrate.”

She was speaking at non-governmental organisation Equal Education's national conference in Tembisa, Ekurhuleni on Monday.

“It cannot be said that just because things were bad in apartheid doesn't mean we cannot say things are bad now. Democracy always has to be strengthened and fought for.”

Hogan's comments followed the High Court in Pretoria ruling in May that the department's failure to provide textbooks to Limpopo schools violated the Constitution. The application was brought by rights organisation Section 27.

Some pupils had been without textbooks for the past six months because the department failed to order books on time last year. The department was ordered to devise a catch-up plan to remedy the consequences of the delay, and to supply the affected schools with textbooks by June 15.

The department failed to meet the court's deadline, but Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said her department met with Section 27 and agreed to move the deadline to June 27. – Sapa