Dept 'politicising' textbook crisis

Befa says the Limpopo Education Dept has failed to take responsibility for the latest crisis.

A photograph taken by DA Limpopo leader Desiree van der Walt, shows boxes abandoned in a hall, apparently full of undelivered textbooks on 3 April 2014. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Lobby group Basic Education for All (Befa) has accused the Limpopo Education Department of politicising the issue of textbooks shortages and failing to take responsibility.

The group has approached the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria seeking an urgent order that will compel the department to deliver outstanding textbooks to more than 30 schools by the end of May.

The group also wants an order giving the South African Human Rights Commission the power to police delivery.

Befa's Tebogo Sephakgamela, said, "this thing isn't political it's about the interest of learners. It's ridiculous that five learners have to share one textbook."

Officials on Tuesday confirmed that more than 150,000 books were yet to be delivered in the province.

The Limpopo Education Department told the court a combination of budgetary constraints and poor communication from schools was to blame for the latest textbook delivery scandal.

At the same time, the department says the book shortages haven't affected teaching and learning.

The case is still underway and it's not yet clear when a ruling will be handed down.

Education officials were implicated in yet another textbook scandal back in 2012.