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Lesufi hopes to find middle ground with Driehoek walkway collapse lawsuits

Several families of pupils who were affected by the Driehoek walkway collapse have slapped the Education Department with lawsuits, seeking compensation for the trauma and medical bills among other things.

Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi hands over the newly built walkway at  Hoёrskool Driehoek in Vanderbijlpark on 23 April 2019. Picture: @EducationGP/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says his department is working to find common ground with the families of the victims of the Hoerskool Driehoek walkway collapse.

Four pupils were killed and about 20 others were injured when the structure came crashing down in February while pupils were making their way to class.

On Tuesday, Lesufi unveiled the newly built walkway at the school in Vanderbijlpark, nearly three months after the tragedy.

Several families of pupils who were affected by the Driehoek walkway collapse have slapped the Education Department with lawsuits, seeking compensation for the trauma and medical bills among other things.

Lesufi said that he personally would not oppose any legal action.

“I don’t want to oppose anything; I really feel that the lawyers must meet and find a solution and find the middle ground. I didn’t sit under the tree and said the structure must fall.”

But Lesufi said that he believes an amicable solution can be found between the department and the families.

“Find negotiations, find the middle ground that’s acceptable to all parties and find a mechanism that will resolve this matter.”

The MEC has also confirmed that his department has received three reports from the investigation into the deadly collapse which he says will be made public soon.