Shooting of Gauteng principal inside school premises 'a hit' - Panyaza Lesufi

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Lazarus Baloyi was shot and killed at Buyani Primary School in Finetown, Gauteng.
Lazarus Baloyi was shot and killed at Buyani Primary School in Finetown, Gauteng.
Supplied
  • Lazarous Baloyi was shot and killed inside the Buyani Primary School premises. 
  • Police are investigating and have not made an arrest as yet.
  • Sadtu raised concerns around safety at schools. 

Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says video footage, which shows a principal from Finetown gunned down, makes "it quite clear it was a hit".

Lesufi visited the Buyani Primary School on Friday morning after reports that the principal, Lazarous Baloyi, 53, was shot and killed  inside the premises. 

Police spokesperson Captain Kay Makhubele said several shots were fired at Baloyi's car as he entered the school. 

Makhubele said police were alerted at around 07:00. 

A murder case has been opened for further investigation.

The school has surveillance cameras, Lesufi said. 

READ | Gauteng principal shot dead on school premises

"From the video footage, it's quite clear that this was a hit - that someone was assigned to do what they have done, and we want to condemn that and implore law enforcement agencies to go all out and hunt these perpetrators," Lesufi said. 

He added that there was "someone, [or] some people behind that gunman".

Lesufi said the footage and other information pertaining to the incident would be handed over to police, to assist with the investigation. 

Baloyi was the secretary of the South African Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) in Ennerdale.

READ | Gauteng govt staffer killed after 28 bullets fired at car

Sadtu spokesperson Nomusa Cembi said the union was outraged by the attack and called for a speedy investigation.

Cembi said the union was calling on the department to strengthen security at schools. 

buyani primary school
Panyaza Lesufi visited Buyani Primary School on Friday after a principal was shot dead.

"This is quite a traumatic incident and we would like to call on the department to provide support to the school," Cembi added.

Lesufi said it was difficult to bring armed security into schools, which is why they relied on police for protection. 

"What we did, as a department, was to get what we call, CPF (Community Policing Forum), as people that can patrol our schools and volunteers that can come and assist us.

"But we were slapped with a court order by security companies, the body that manages security companies, that we are not allowed to have people, who are not officially security guards, to protect our schools," he added. 

Lesufi said the department was being fined a large amount, which it was fighting in court. 

buyani primary school
Crime scene where Buyani Primary School principal Lazarus Baloyi was shot and killed.
Supplied

He said the department could not afford professional security personnel on its current budget, which was why it had asked the CPF and volunteers to protect schools.  

"So that is the state of affairs about lack of security in the education sector and that is why we are calling on law enforcement agencies, [that] when they patrol, to patrol our schools because the security sector targeted us, as a department, and they felt that we are taking their jobs. Therefore, they wanted the courts to fine us those hundreds and millions of rands, which we don't have," Lesufi added. 

The department's psycho-social unit has been dispatched to offer counselling to affected pupils and teachers. 

Lesufi said he was concerned about the rising number of teacher killings in the area, adding that schools would not be allowed to become "killing fields".

No arrests have been made, as yet, and the motive for the shooting is still unknown, Makhubele said. 

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