Textbook saga a govt failure: ANC

By Drum Digital
30 July 2012

The ANC's national executive committee (NEC) has acknowledged that the late delivery of textbooks in Limpopo was a "serious failure" by government, the party's secretary general Gwede Mantashe said on Monday.

"The NEC... considered the lack of delivery of books in Limpopo as shocking and unacceptable and believes that whosoever is found to be responsible must face stern action that may include criminal charges," Mantashe told reporters in Johannesburg.

"The NEC acknowledged that this is a serious failure on the part of government and the department of education in particular at both national and provincial level."

He said the NEC discussed the textbook saga during its lekgotla last week. All task teams investigating the saga needed to reconcile their reports to a presidential task team.

"That final report should be the basis for any action to be taken, including action against any person found guilty of any misdemeanor," he said.

Mantashe said the lekgotla also discussed a report by the Auditor General on the poor performance of municipalities.

"There is a synergy between the AG's report and our own report that was done by our own monitoring and evaluation unit," Mantashe said.

"The ANC acknowledges that many of the problems at local government level have to do with political tensions within the ANC and the alliance."

He said the ANC would ensure that "no single member of the organisation uses a public office as a tool to lobby for power and as a consequence fails to deliver".

The lekgotla said one African language needed to be compulsory in schools, depending on the region.

It also discussed lessening the focus on tenders as a procurement method since it was inextricably linked to corruption, Mantashe said.

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