Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma is waiting for a final report on delays in delivering Limpopo textbooks, the presidency said on Tuesday.
“The president, having received a preliminary report, now awaits the final one from the presidential task team led by the Deputy Minister of Finance Mr Nhlanhla Nene,” the presidency said in a statement.
Zuma was “prioritising the matter as education is an apex priority for government and also for the president personally”.
The presidency said Zuma had directed that there be consequences for anyone found responsible for any wrongdoing in the late delivery of books.
Zuma had directed the education ministry to work with the National Treasury and Limpopo provincial government to ensure sufficient resources were available to ensure textbooks were delivered on time next year.
The Limpopo education department was placed under administration last year in terms of legislation allowing the national government to step in if a province did not fulfil its legal obligations.
This took place after the Limpopo government used up its overdraft of R7 million and had tried to increase it to R1.7 billion to pay salaries in November.
The presidency said there was no law on how the national government should intervene.
“To remedy the situation, government has introduced the Monitoring, Support and Intervention Bill to regulate the national interventions,” the presidency said.
“The presidency and the department of co-operative governance and traditional affairs are prioritising the finalisation of this crucial legislation as directed by the president early this month.”
Zuma said that while this legislation was being finalised, a special protocol had to be developed to manage relations between the different spheres of government to ensure service delivery was not affected.
“The president will not rest until he gets to the bottom of the crisis and finds lasting solutions, working with his Cabinet who feel equally strongly about the need to ensure that this does not recur.” - Sapa