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Basic Education Dept awaits Ramaphosa response to pit toilet report

In March, President Ramaphosa gave Minister Angie Motshekga a month to come up with an emergency plan to address sanitation problems and three months to roll out proper infrastructure.

FILE: A pit toilet. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Basic Education Department has confirmed it's submitted a detailed audit report of all schools that still use pit toilets in the country to President Cyril Ramaphosa.

In March, Ramaphosa gave Minister Angie Motshekga a month to come up with an emergency plan to address sanitation problems and three months to roll out proper infrastructure.

The intervention followed the death of a five-year-old girl who drowned in pit toilet at an Eastern Cape primary school.

President Ramaphosa is now studying the audit report aimed at eradicating unsafe toilets at schools.

The Basic Education Departments' Elijah Mhlanga: "The report was submitted to the president a week ago, for his attention. The department will await further iinput from the president."

Mhlanga says the department is also awaiting a document finalising how much it will cost to address sanitation problems at schools.

"The report does indicate that for us to eradicate all the pit latrines, a huge amount of money is required."

The department says while the private sector has come forward to assist, an intervention from Treasury will be required urgently.

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