MEC shocked at ‘mystery’ of fresh textbooks’ dumping

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The discovery of another load of textbooks dumped in Limpopo has been met with shock by Education MEC Namane Dickson Masemola, the provincial education department has said.

Spokesperson Pat Kgomo said the department would meet the police later in the day to discuss information around the dumping.

“The department, and the MEC in particular, learned with shock about the dumping of books. We are, however, confident that the police will solve this mystery.”

He said the department was in close cooperation with the police to get to the bottom of the abandoned textbooks problem.

Lt-Col Ronel Otto said that more than 5 000 textbooks had been found dumped in Majeje, in the Phalaborwa region.

The books were dumped in an open veld yesterday morning and were in good condition.

“The between 5 000 to 6 000 books range from Grade Zero to Grade Nine for various subjects,” Otto said.

“Police, along with the education department, will launch investigations in order to determine where the books came from and where they were supposed to go.”

Some grades in Limpopo received textbooks seven months after the school year started, while others were still waiting.

Earlier in the year, lobby group Section27 obtained a court order for textbooks to be delivered to Limpopo by June 15.

In a meeting between Section27 and the department on June 21, a revised date of June 27 was set.

Yesterday, President Jacob Zuma received a preliminary report from a presidential task team that investigated the late delivery of textbooks in Limpopo.

Zuma is studying the report and has urged the task team to continue and conclude its work. He said he would pronounce on the report once the matter has been concluded.

Otto said some of the books were still in their boxes and all the books had been taken to the police station for safekeeping.

No criminal case had been opened, she said.

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