Limpopo MEC denies textbook admission

2013-06-25 08:58

Limpopo Education MEC Dickson Masemola denied claims by the DA that there are still schools in the province without textbooks.

The MEC had not made any admission that there were still no textbooks in many schools in Limpopo, his spokesman Pat Kgomo said yesterday.

“What I know is that the MEC was referring not to schools, but to say there might be some learners at certain schools who might not be having books,” said Kgomo.

“Not that there are totally no books in certain schools, but instead of 30 there might be 10 (learners) not having books,” Kgomo said.

Earlier, Democratic Alliance MPL Desiree van der Walt said Masemola had admitted to the Limpopo legislature that there were still no textbooks in many Limpopo schools as midyear exams drew to a close.

“The admission was made during a response to a debate on the education budget vote in the legislature,” Van der Walt said in a statement.

“This admission from the MEC comes amid much denial from the officials of his department about the shortages of textbooks.”

Van der Walt said the DA had written to Masemola asking for details of which schools, grades and subjects were affected.

Schools in Limpopo were without books for the first seven months of the school year in 2012. In January, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga described the Limpopo textbook saga as “unfortunate”.

“It should not have happened,” she said.

Motshekga said the delayed textbooks were for grades 1 to 3 and Grade 10. Matriculants were not affected.

Motshekga denied accountability in the Limpopo textbook saga. “It (delivering textbooks) is an administrative function and it has nothing to do with me as a minister,” she told The New Age business briefing in Johannesburg.

“Basically, the problem lies with the administration and not the political office ... The problem lies in the province ... It is a provincial problem.”

She said investigations were under way to see which officials were responsible for the textbooks not being delivered.

On January 8, the department said at least 98% of textbooks had been delivered to inland schools ahead of the first day of school.

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