We will force our school open - Roodepoort residents

Johannesburg - Parents and pupils of Davidsonville vowed to forcibly reopen Roodepoort Primary School on Monday morning.

"I am going to use bolt cutters to open this school. We are going to open it with force," Jerome Lottering from the Davidsonville Community Forum told News24 outside the school.

Parents and a group of around 40 pupils in their purple uniforms had gathered outside the gates of the school.

Several police vehicles were parked nearby.

Lottering said a mediation task team appointed by the Gauteng education department to find solutions for the school following its closure, was ineffective.

The school, which has been mired in allegations of corruption and racism, was temporarily closed just over two weeks ago.

In the interim, some pupils were moved to Lufhereng Primary School in Soweto.

'No faith' in mediation team

Residents claimed their problems with the school centred on the allegedly "corrupt" appointment of the school's principal and her deputies, and not that the principal was black.

"We are not going to wait for that mediation team. They told us yesterday to give them some time," Lottering said

He claimed this was the third time the team had promised to tell parents about their proposed solutions.

"We have no faith in this team. They have given us no definitive answer," he said.

"We don't care if they are reverends or pastors. This team is using delaying tactics and they are there just to placate the MEC and the premier."

Provincial education department spokesperson Phumla Sekhonyane told News24 last week Tuesday that the team "has been given the space to conduct its work without any undue influence from the department, any group or individuals".

"It is on this basis that the department has taken a decision to cease from making public any information that has a potential of being seen as determining a pre-perceived outcome of this process or influencing the ultimate decision of the task team until the team has concluded its work," she said.

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