Ennerdale principal shooting: Counselling to be provided to school pupils

Principal Lazarus Baloyi was shot dead on the school premises in the early hours of Friday morning by unknown men.

FILE: MEC for Education in Gauteng Panyaza Lesufi visited the Buyani Primary School in Finetown on 18 June 2021 after the principal was shot and killed on the school premises. Picture: Gauteng Department of Education. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - The Gauteng Education Department on Friday said counselling would be provided for the pupils at the Buyani Primary School in Finetown in Ennerdale after their principal was shot dead.

Lazarus Baloyi was shot dead on the school premises in the early hours of Friday morning by unknown men.
He had been the principal at the school for several years.

One of his family members told Eyewitness News that they are all in shock.

“It’s very painful… (Lazarus) was a very kind person and a very generous person. He was my brother-in-law, but it never felt like just a brother-in-law. He was a good friend to many people.

Gauteng Education Department spokesperson Steve Mabona said learners and teachers who witnessed this death would receive counselling.

“A team will be dispatched to the school who will support the learners as well, as some learners were (at school) when the incident took place. They could hear the sounds at the back of the school.”

The motive for the attack isn’t known but Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi, who condemned the shooting, said he believed it was a hit.

He has called on law enforcement agencies to use all their resources to ensure the perpetrators are arrested.

“I appreciate the police’s thoroughness in investigating this matter and their commitment to hunt down the killer or the person that hired the killer.”

At the same time, the South African Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) has called for prompt and decisive action in finding those who killed the principal.

Sadtu has urged the national Department of Education to strengthen security in schools.

Provincial secretary Tseliso Ledimo said: “Schools should be safe havens for our children and the workers. We call on the law enforcement to act swiftly in bringing the culprits to book.”

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