DA disgusted by school racism

2013-06-06 17:17
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The DA on Thursday condemned apparent racism at a Bloemfontein school.

Such "disgusting incidents" could not be tolerated, and the school principal had failed to teach pupils the value of human dignity, DA MP Patricia Kopane said in a statement.

The SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) said earlier it would investigate the alleged racism at the Wilgehof Primary School.

In a Grade 7 classroom, the old South African flag was reportedly on display, along with a picture of expelled ANCYL leader Julius Malema alongside that of a monkey.

The SAHRC conducted an on-site inspection of the school after a white pupil's parent laid a complaint. It said there were complaints that some of the pupils had been called kaffirs.

Free State Education MEC Tate Pule Makgoe said earlier on Thursday the history and life orientation teacher allegedly responsible for the display and for making racist remarks, as well as the principal, had been suspended.

A decision on their futures at the school would be made pending an investigation.

"The department will not tolerate any racist behaviour at schools, and those found guilty will be dealt with according to the law."

Malema reportedly said he was "OK" with the picture of him under one of a monkey.

"They can do that with me, displaying me next to the monkeys, it's okay," Malema was quoted as saying in the Sowetan newspaper on Thursday.

"Nothing shocks me. Our people are subjected to harsh realities of racism everyday. As for me, once you display a racist attitude, I don't waste time, I deal with it right away because I know that that is how they are brought up."


The Sowetan reported that according to writing on the monkey picture primitive brains only allowed monkeys to make strange expressions when they wanted to speak.

The SA Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) said on Wednesday it had previously complained to the department about alleged racism at the school.

"We have on numerous occasions called for the full investigation of allegations of racism at this school, but the department has always opted for defensive tactics claiming that the concerns and complaints raised by our members are baseless and unfounded," it said.

Read more on:    sadtu  |  da  |  sahrc  |  ancyl  |  patricia kopane  |  julius malema  |  bloemfontein  |  education  |  racism

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