Teachers threatened, pupils forced out of class as protests disrupt start of school in North West

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The first day of schooling has been disrupted at five schools due to protest action in North West.
The first day of schooling has been disrupted at five schools due to protest action in North West.
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  • Teaching at five North West schools was disrupted on Wednesday due to protests.
  • Protesters reportedly forced pupils out of classrooms.
  • Teachers were reportedly threatened.

Protests disrupted the first day of schooling at fives North West schools.

The protests broke out in the Welbedacht township near Zeerust on Wednesday, allegedly over water shortages in the area.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Amanda Funani said the protestors "barricaded the entrances in town with stones".

The roads were reopened by mid-morning, but not before schooling was disrupted at Ngotoane Secondary, Mesega Primary, Babuseng Primary, RB Dithupe Primary and DP Moloto Special School, said North West Education MEC Viola Motsumi.

"It was further alleged that a group of people made threats to teachers who were at school on Tuesday. The disruption gained momentum on Wednesday, with learners being forced out of class at the schools," said Motsumi.

READ | No pupil will remain unplaced, even if it means overcrowding, says Limpopo education MEC

Motsumi condemned the disruption at the schools.

Motsumi said:

I just cannot understand how adults can go to school and prevent learners from receiving an education.

"Learners are the future of this country, and they should be given the chance to get education. The Constitution of this country emphasises that every child has a right to education. Clearly, those behind this disruption are violating the right to education."

Motsumi said she "engaged" with the Ngaka Modiri Molema District mayor to attend to the issue of water in the area.

"The department is continuing to make engagements with the South African Police Service towards the arrest of these individuals," Motsumi said.

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