'Soobrayan not back at work'

Panyaza Lesufi says Bobby Soobrayan is on special leave and it doesn’t mean suspension.

Bobby Soobrayan.

JOHANNESBURG - Department of Basic Education's Panyaza Lesufi says allegations that Director General (DG) Bobby Soobrayan is back at work are not true.

Lesufi spoke to Talk at 9 about the issue of Soobrayan being on special leave.

The spokesperson said the DG is on special leave which doesn't mean he is suspended.

"The DG went on special leave after 10 days following the announcement. When Soobrayan was suspended we were in the middle of being audited by the Auditor General and the DG was at work to answer some questions the auditor had for him."

Lesufi added Soobrayan was put on special leave by the department because of a protest from the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) who alleged the DG authorised payment for people who mark scripts for matrics.

"Sadtu also alleged there were funds from the teacher's bargaining council that were not used, but were authorised."

Asked if strained relations between Sadtu and the department would affect education, Lesufi said relations with Sadtu had improved.

Sadtu has repeatedly called for Soobrayan's head this year, claiming the department had suffered financial mismanagement under his leadership.