Equal Education urges govt to improve school infrastructure

Activists and researchers Equal Education recently visited an Eastern Cape school where pit toilets are still being used.

"As the Development Bank of Southern Africa, with the R3.5 billion you could’ve eradicated pit toilets..." - Bruce Whitfield  [Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN]

CAPE TOWN - Pressure group Equal Education has again urged government to spend more on school infrastructure.

Activists and researchers from the organisation recently visited an Eastern Cape school where pit toilets are still being used.

It's one of many schools, not just in Eastern Cape, where pupils have no choice but to use such sanitation facilities.

Earlier this year five-year-old Viwe Jali died after drowning in a pit toilet at Luna Primary School in Mbizana.

Equal Education was stunned to find learners and teachers still have to use pit latrines at many Eastern Cape schools.

The lobby group this week visited Lutoli Junior Secondary in Sibangweni in the Eastern Cape. Equal Education’s Philile Ntombela-Masson says this is an awful affront to the rights and dignity of learners.

“All the while 78% of learners in grade 4 cannot read for meaning. The Department of Basic Education and provincial education departments have failed to address infrastructure and sanitation backlogs in schools.”

The Basic Education Department is carrying out an audit of schools with pit toilets.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)