I have heard you, says Basic Education Minister at funeral

Minister told highly functional school is under resourced

Benson Ntlemo

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshega has said she heard the complaints that one of the best performing schools in South Africa, Jim Chavani High at Xikundu in the Collins Chabane Local Municipality, is under resourced with no administration block.

Basic Education minister addressing the funeral service of 6 Jim Chavani high learners who died in a horrific car accident on April 16

Teachers are using one of the classes as an admin block leading more to congested classes.

This was said at the funeral service of six learners at the school who died on April 16 after the bakkie that had offered them a lift home hit a house and overturned.

The bakkie was allegedly driven by a 20 year old youth without a driver’s licence.

The six learners were Selby Vukosi Ringani, 19, Nhlaluko Maluleke, 17, Vuxaka Obrie Chauke, 17, Freedom Xivutiso Rihlampfu, 20, Themba Nyambi, 19 and Tommy Masipenda, 17.

The joint funeral service, organized by the department of basic education and addressed by minister Motshega was held at the Saselamani Stadium and was attended by various leaders including traditional leaders Hosi Xikundu and Hosi Mhinga.

All the late leaners were from Xikundu with the exception of Nhlaluko Maluleke, the only girl who was said to be pregnant and was from Mhinga.

Minister Motshega spoke after several speakers spoke and demanded that the government should do something about the conditions at Jim Chavani High which is one of the best performing schools in the country but is under resourced with not even an administration block.

“Jim Chavani is one of our highly functioning schools and the demands you are asking are for basic necessities, the admin block. I am sorry that such a school is not having the basic necessities,” said Motshega.

Mourners included Hosi Mhinga and other dignitaries. Behind Hosi Mhinga in blue suit is Hosi Shigamani

That is the same venue where in March 2016, Hosi Mhinga made a similar request to former president Jacob Zuma. At the funeral of the late cabinet minister Collins Chabane Hosi Mhinga used the platform as a representative of the family to ask the former leader to grant Malamulele area a municipal of their own and name after the former minister in his honour. This later happened and there is Collins Chabane Local Municipality.

Representative of the school and the Xikundu Traditional Council all told the minister that the condition of the school left much to be desired although the school was performing beyond expectations.

The six kids who died in an accident

School principal Emmanuel Ndove and school teacher Mashangu Mercy Maluleke both urged the minister to do something to improve the condition at the school in honour of the learners who died in their school uniforms on their way home from school.

Representatives of the learners Precious Chauke called on the government to help with proper scholar transport to avoid “loss of life”.

Cosas leader Douglas Ngobeni said in his address that he was coming to offer condolences  and did not want to use the funeral service to raise other issues.

But he said he heard the complaints about the conditions at the school and we “will escalate them after the funeral.”

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