Section 27: Pit toilets in schools continue to endanger the lives of pupils

The advocacy group is trying to compel the Department of Basic Education to address the sanitation crisis.

Michael Komape died after falling into a pit toilet at school in 2014. Picture: Twitter/@Corruption_SA

JOHANNESBURG - Section 27 has returned to the High Court on Friday, saying pit toilets at schools continues to threaten lives of pupils.

The advocacy group is trying to compel the Department of Basic Education to address the sanitation crisis.

Section 27 has been trying to put pressure on the department to do its job for years.

In 2018, the High Court in Limpopo ordered the department to address the sanitation crisis in schools.

READ: DBE DG vows to eradicate pit toilets at schools by 2022/2023 financial year

The order followed the 2014 death of 5-year-old Michael Komape and other pupils.

Years later, and around 3,000 schools are still using pit toilets in South Africa - with many of them in the Limpopo province.

Section 27's Boitumelo Masipa said the persistence of pit toilets in schools was unreasonable and unconstitutional.

“The persistence of pit toilets in schools continues to endanger the lives of learners and breaching their rights to dignity and safety.”

The department said it believed it had made headway in the eradication of unsafe toilets and hoped to address the crisis in the next two years.

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