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Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Hoërskool Overvaal: SAHRC says protesters must be peaceful

Bonile Khanyi

Protesters have every right to be outside Hoërskool Overvaal but they must demonstrate peacefully.

This is what Advocate André Gaum, Commissioner of the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) responsible for Basic Education, said on Thursday morning. Tensions have calmed after protest action flared up for a second day at the school after 8 were injured and 10 were arrested on Wednesday.

Speaking on Power FM, Gaum said he met with the principal, demonstrators and police. He said he made it clear to the principal that the protesters had every right to be there but also told the protesters they had to be responsible. Gaum said he told protestors to be peaceful and non-threatening.

No one from the school’s management team has met with the protesters.

Education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi said on Wednesday, that communication between him and the school broke down.

There was a standoff between parents and protestors early on Thursday.

ANC and EFF supporters took to the streets on the first day of school, to express their frustration over a court ruling that the Afrikaans-medium school did not have to admit 55 English-speaking pupils, despite the Gauteng education department’s instruction to do so.

The School’s Governing Body (SGB) is claimed there wasn’t enough space to accommodate the additional 55 learners.

According to recent media reports, the arrested group is expected to appear in the Vereeniging magistrate’s court on Thursday.


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