School’s stolen chairs recovered

2018-05-24 06:00
Some of the recovered chairs recently stolen from Umnqophiso Primary School in Lwandle.PHOTO: supplied

Some of the recovered chairs recently stolen from Umnqophiso Primary School in Lwandle.PHOTO: supplied

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Churches, taverns and ordinary residents have been named as the main culprits who bought chairs stolen from Umnqophiso Primary School.

It is believed residents even submitted orders for chairs to the thieves.

This was revealed after three suspects were bust last Friday (18 May); 83 chairs have been returned to the school to date.

Residents claim some of the chairs were found and burnt in a recent fire in Pholile Informal Settlement, while others have been transported to the Eastern Cape.

Umnqophiso Primary’s principal Mxolisi Msingizane told City Vision the school is relieved at the recovery of some of its chairs.

“The thieves themselves, after being caught, managed to point out where exactly the chairs were,” he said.

“They also revealed to us that each chair was sold for R20. It was recovered not far from the school.”

Msingizane said the thieves reside near the school, only jumping the fence to get to and from the school.

“There are still a lot of chairs missing,” he said. “The ones that were recovered were chairs we had bought to replace those that were stolen before. These thieves even told us that residents would come to them to order chairs.

“This has had a negative impact on learners’ morale, as they had to sit on crates. But things have calmed down after this recovery.”

Msingizane hoped this would mean an end to the burglaries that have hit the school hard since the beginning of this year.

The school has spent thousands of rands replacing and renovating the school.

Eric Frank, who also assists in protecting the school, said one evening he met three men standing in front of the school gate.

“I was at the school the entire night, but they waited until I had left in my car,” he said.

“When I came back I saw the three standing in front of the gate and I immediately took note of them. You must remember that volunteering to look after a school these days is very dangerous.”

Frank told City Vision the school was able to recover the chairs when they cornered a woman, who revealed who had sold the chairs to her.

“We went to Pholile and recovered the chairs,” he said. “What was shocking was to witness that surrounding churches also bought these stolen chairs.

“Others were recovered in taverns and shacks, and we were told others were sent to the Eastern Cape.”

Lt Colonel Xolani Williams, Lwandle police station commander, said they are currently investigating the matter.


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