Pupils' display of support for EFF raises ire of Kevin Pietersen

2017-10-13 22:57

Pietermaritzburg – A picture of pupils at a top Pietermaritzburg school displaying shirts with slogans in support of the EFF on them raised the ire of a former international cricketer on Friday. However, the cricketer has also been criticised for his outburst. 

In the said T-shirts displayed by the students, were phrases, "EFF our last hope of getting our land back" and "loading... 2019".  

In a tweet, former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen - a former pupil of the school - tagged Maritzburg College in the tweet, asking "what the hell is this?"

He tweeted: "Total disrespect for a once GREAT school! Are you joking?!?!"

He attached a photo of three pupils dressed in Maritzburg College school uniforms holding the two shirts.

The picture of the T-shirts displayed by the pupils. The picture was edited to protect the pupils' identities. (Twitter)


Maritzburg 'above politics'

Maritzburg College's Twitter account responded, asking that the cricketer delete the tweet. 

"We are aware of it and it is certainly not acceptable to us at all," the school tweeted. 

The tweet has since been deleted. 

The school could not be reached for comment.

Pietersen replied to Maritzburg College and said the school was "a great school and certainly not a place to make political stances".

"It's above politics," he explained.

KwaZulu-Natal education department spokesperson Kwazi Mthethwa said the department would be investigating the incident. 

A team from the department will visit the school on Monday for a "fact-finding mission", Mthethwa said. 

"If we allow this type of thing to go on we will soon end up having political rallies at schools... Children are supposed to focus on their studies, not politics."

"We need to find out if it is campaigning season or something at the school."

Meanwhile, some on Twitter celebrated the pupils' "boldness" while some users questioned Pietersen's criticism.

EFF leader Julius Malema tweeted: "South Africa's future looks bright, the wheels of change are unstoppable" in response to the photo. EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said the pupils were "the definition of the future".

Iviwe Xhamela (@Xhosa_Goddess) tweeted "protect those three Maritzburg College boys at all cost (sic)."

Bear Holland (@beartorius), however, said he was confused by Pietersen's criticism.

"Are you more upset over the statement on the shirt rather than the fact they're sharing their political view (sic)?" Holland asked. 

Social commentator Maggs Naidu said Pietersen' tweet was "as rotten as Trump's opposition to the kneeling campaign".

Read more on:    maritzburg college  |  eff  |  pietermaritzburg  |  education

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