PICS: Primary school set alight, Lesufi vows not to fix it

2019-07-04 17:29

A primary school in Katlehong on the East Rand of Gauteng has been set alight, allegedly by protesting residents who are demanding electricity in the area, the education department said on Thursday.

A case of arson has been opened at a police station in the area, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi's office confirmed.

Gauteng police could not immediately confirm the incident.

Lesufi took to Twitter on Thursday afternoon posting pictures of the gutted Katlehong Primary School and expressing his outrage.

In the tweet, he said government would not spend any money fixing the primary school.

"People of Katlehong, this is what is left of Katlehong Primary School because the community is protesting against lack of electricity. This is completely unacceptable. Forget it if you think we will fix it! You will see to finish," said Lesufi.

Katlehong Primary School

(Supplied)

This is not the first time Lesufi has sent warnings to communities when schools were set alight during protests.

In 2017, during the handing over of the new state-of-the-art Sinenhlahla Primary School in Rethabiseng, Bronkhorstspruit, Lesufi warned residents against destroying, burning and stealing from the school.

"If you burn this school down, I'm not going to build another one for you," said Lesufi.

Apart from arson, several schools in Gauteng have been burgled and had learning equipment and cash stolen, in some instances.

Condemned the barbaric acts

The ANC's national spokesperson Pule Mabe said in a statement on Thursday that the party condemned the destruction of the school.

"We strongly condemn this destruction of a school, in the process destroying the future of the children, past and present. This senseless act of criminality must not go unpunished.

Katlehong Primary School

(Supplied)

"Since 1994, the ANC government has been working tirelessly with communities to open the doors of learning and culture to all children, so that we secure our future. As communities, we should be determined never to allow criminals and anarchists to derail this progressive programme," said Mabe.

He said the party is confident that law-enforcement agencies would leave no stone unturned in pursuing those responsible and ensuring that they face the full might of the criminal justice system.

"We urge members of the community to join hands with the police and provide whatever support or information that they might have to the police to enable them to bring those responsible to justice."

Katlehong Primary School

(Supplied)

Mabe called on law-enforcement agencies to continue adopting a zero tolerance approach against those who destroy public property.

"We must ensure that criminal elements in our midst have no place to hide," he said.

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Read more on:    johannesburg  |  protests
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