Dramatic spike in school vandalism in North West since start of coronavirus lockdown
Rustenburg - The number of schools that have been vandalised in the North West province since the start of the coronavirus lockdown has increased from seven to 55, Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela said on Friday.
"I am totally shocked and disappointed at the increasing rate of vandalism taking place in our schools. Criminals should not be allowed to damage and destroy the future of our learners, this is totally unacceptable.
"I personally went to Bonwakgogo Primary School to see the extent of the damage and I became so emotional to witness the destruction that happened there. This poses a serious drawback to the department. When we resume with our studies, learners will not have their resources due to criminals," she said after visiting the school in Chaneng, outside Rustenburg, where chairs and cutlery were stolen and windows were damaged.
"We cannot allow criminals to do as they wish with the school property of our learners. These schools belong to the community and they should work together with the police to apprehend the suspects. I want to thank those active school governing bodies and the broader communities who are working hard for these criminals to be arrested."
Criminals made off with solar panels, roof tiles, fences and groceries at a number of schools across the province.
At Mfidikwe Primary School, near Rustenburg, three plasma television sets were stolen, and at Sekwati Primary School in Mmakau, near Brits, the kitchen roof was stolen.
Groceries for learners were stolen from Rooikoppies Primary School, also near Brits.
At Kgwanyape Primary School in Modderspruit, near Mooinooi, copper pipes and basins were destroyed in the school toilets.
Electrical cables were stolen from Michael Modisakeng Secondary School in Majakaneng, near Brits.
At Matlhaleng Secondary School in Kanana, near Klerksdorp, a fence was stolen, while four sewing machines were stolen and five surveillance cameras were damaged at Selang Thuto Primary School.
The Department of Basic Education on Monday said 183 schools nationwide have been vandalised since the coronavirus lockdown came into effect.
African News Agency (ANA)