- Two pupils were stabbed at Hoërskool Elspark on Monday.
- Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said the fight stemmed from an issue regarding cellphones.
- Lesufi wants a tangible report on the incident before he makes any judgement.
Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says he wants a tangible report of a stabbing incident at Hoërskool Elspark on Monday that left two pupils injured.
"I just had a painful, difficult session after I was briefed of what happened; apparently the incident started on Friday. It's a fight over cellphones and it spilled over to Monday and as I am speaking to you, two learners were hospitalised, one has been rushed to theatre because the middle finger is hanging," Lesufi told the media at the school on Tuesday.
Lesufi visited the school after he was disturbed by videos of the incident which did the rounds on social media.
Lesufi told school management to gather evidence on the incident and present a report on Friday - only then would the department be able to pass judgement.
"We have a responsibility to build a truly non-racial South Africa and it starts in the classroom," he said.
This followed pupils and parents telling the media there was an alleged environment at the school of "racial discrimination". The School Governing Body (SGB) disputed this claim.
"We do not support racism at this school, we really don't. We want all the learners to be safe at our schools," SGB chair, Marius Kuilder said.
Lesufi said he was aware of the various allegations by pupils and parents and did not "want to make sweeping statements about racism".
"If we act wrongly we are going to set the wrong precedent, we must be sure. I hate racism with a passion, but I am addicted to non-racialism. There is no way that I will point the finger without any evidence.
"I will never make a sweeping statement of racism [when] I do not have anything even tangible. I would be naïve to think that a school going through a transition would not have some racial tensions. If we need to provide the school with support then we will do that," Lesufi explained.
The MEC said he was proud of the school for opening its doors to all children.
Albertina Vesi, a mother of one of the pupils that was stabbed, said she believed race was a factor in the incident.
"On the race issue, he has been talking about this racial problem at the school," she alleged.
The parents of another 17-year-old pupil who was stabbed at the school, told News24 on Monday that the boy was merely trying to protect his friend.
"The children accused another learner of stealing a cellphone. He [victim] was attacked, while he was trying to protect his friend [learner accused of stealing a phone] and he was subsequently stabbed just above the left hip and two of his fingers were cut open," the parents told News24.
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A video of the incident made the rounds on social media on Monday where a knife could be seen in the clip.
The facts surrounding the incident were still unclear.
News24 reached out to the Gauteng police on the matter. Their comment will be added once received.
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