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'Court failed to acknowledge circumstances around Komape's death’

Michael Komape (5) drowned in a pit toilet at his Limpopo primary school in 2014. On Monday, the court dismissed a claim on behalf of the Komape family.

FILE: Michael Komape's classmates are gathered outside his house in Limpopo for his funeral service. Picture: Masego Rahlaga/EWN

POLOKWANE - Legal advocacy group Section 27 says the High Court in Polokwane has failed to adequately acknowledge the circumstances around Michael Komape's death.

The five-year-old boy drowned in a pit toilet at his Limpopo primary school in 2014.

On Monday the court dismissed a claim on behalf of the Komape family to compensate them for general and constitutional damages.

Section 27's Shenice Linderboom says Monday's ruling in the High Court in Polokwane has not only let down Komape's family but also other children who are subjected to pit toilets at schools.

“We had also hoped for constitutional damages or development of the common law in the amount of R2 million, this was unfortunately also dismissed by the judge.”

She says they had hoped the government would at least be ordered to pay general damages as the Komape family suffered grief and emotional trauma following the little boy's death.

“The family has been briefed, obviously, they are quite disappointed themselves.”

Section 27 says while it's still studying the ruling it plans to take the matter to the Supreme Court of Appeal.