Fraud probe dropped against teacher who identified as African, not Coloured, on CV

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Greg Snyman.
Greg Snyman.
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  • The Western Cape Education Department has withdrawn disciplinary proceedings against a primary school teacher who identified as African on a job application form.
  • This had raised a red flag over possible fraud for the Oudtshoorn teacher, an activist over the government's racial classification system. 
  • The department said racial and gender statistics were kept in line with employment equity legislation, but recognised the issue was personal for the teacher.

Disciplinary action over possible fraud laid against a teacher who identified as African on a job application, when previous documentation had him identified as Coloured, has been withdrawn by the Western Cape Education Department.

TimesLive reported that Greg Snyman faced a fraud investigation for identifying himself as African when applying to be a school principal. 

The long-running matter against the Oudtshoorn teacher was over him being listed in previous documentation as Coloured, and this sparked a probe into possible fraud.

Department spokesperson Bronagh Hammond told News24 on Wednesday that national legislation required an employment equity score to be given to each candidate during the recruitment process.

This was based on race and gender in order to meet employment equity targets. The information was required on job application forms. 

"Mr Snyman had identified himself as 'African' on his CV for this position, but had otherwise indicated 'Coloured' on other applications and documents," said Hammond.

The department was alerted to this discrepancy and Snyman was subsequently charged as this could be considered fraudulent.

READ | Mkhize: No need for Covid-19 stats according to race – until now

"We have since been made aware that Mr Snyman identifies himself as 'African' and has been fighting the current government’s race classification system for a number of years.

"This is extremely personal and sensitive.

Issues

"While we believe that we must continue to redress the injustices of the past, we have reviewed the case and believe it does not warrant further action. It has, however, raised a number of issues with regards to race classification and identity which will require deeper discussion and reflection."

The charges had, in the meantime, been withdrawn against Snyman and he would be contacted to accurately record his personal details as required. 

When contacted for comment, Synman said he could not speak to the media immediately.

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