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Hlungwani Miyelani Anthonia
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Long walk to school in democracy

23 July 2014, 10:55

Most South African pupils seem to have faith, love and an eager for being educated as the late Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s first black president, Nobel Prize winner and anti-Apartheid icon stated that: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” but it’s seems as the above quote falled off on deaf ears, because Mpumalanga Department of Public Works, Roads and Transport and the Department of Education is busy violating the Children’s Right to Education, Section 29(1)(a) of the Bill of Rights in the Constitution.

What I have seen and read on the front page of Sowetan today is intolerable and unsuitable. It is a shame to see a pupil crying hysterically when he had to cross over a sewage line through the bushes to get to school, due to the poor management of the provincial government. Education should be placed as a first priority in our country.

If Nelson Mandela was still alive he would be crying after witnessing his lovely children suffering like this in democracy, and this not one of the ideals that he was prepared to die for during apartheid regime. Yes, 20 years of democracy is being celebrated in South Africa, but just imagine there’s still pupils who face the prospect of walking distances of up to 15km to get to school.

And the most painful part is that they are not safe and they miss morning classes due to the fault of the government that their parents invested their trusts during election time in May 2014. Something has to be done immediately to save the poor children. All this is unconstitutional and against the Right to Education.

The long walk that Mandela experienced to freedom is nearly the same that pupils are experiencing to get to school to acquire knowledge and skills as he recommended.

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