Western Cape MEC condemns protest outside her home
MEC says relations between her office & Equal Education soured after a change in the group’s leadership.
CAPE TOWN - Western Cape Education MEC Debbie Schafer says lobby group, Equal Education, crossed the line today by protesting outside her home in Cape Town's southern suburbs.
In the presence of police officers, members of the group waited for her to receive their findings on the "safety crisis" at schools in the province.
But the MEC refused to yield and instead described their behaviour as "belligerent and aggressive".
The organisation's deputy general secretary, Ntuthuzo Ndzomo, says Equal Education carried out a "social audit" on some 200 schools several months ago.
"We had several findings about the dysfunctionality of schools in the Western Cape. And about two months ago we presented the information to government officials at the district office in Kuilsriver, and we've been waiting for a response from the MEC… and on social media the MEC has been saying she never received it."
Schafer confirmed that three of her district officials have the documents and are working through the findings.
"And it's taking them a lot of time to do that. They've been capturing all the information and working through the document, and trying to deal with each, individual issue."
She says the document was not "well-compiled" and she has been battling to ascertain in what format the report was submitted.
"But a lot of the stuff that was raised was apparently very vague allegations… I mean one of the things they're tweeting about now is they're saying somebody feels unsafe because of gang activity outside their school… I know that. They don't have to tell me that. But unfortunately I cannot control that."
The MEC says relations between her office and Equal Education soured following a change in the group's leadership.
"The tension has not come from my side. I have always had an open door policy and still do. They are most welcome to come to my office and discuss it. I have previously met with them but since there has been a bit of a change in leadership in Equal Education, there appears to have been a change in attitude."