ON THE EVE of schools reopening in South Africa, award-winning journalist and author LUCAS LEDWABA captured these powerful images of a dilapidated, derelict and dangerous school in Limpopo that may find it difficult to comply with COVID-19 requirements.
Below is an interview he had with Chief Nthumeni Mukhwevho of Thondoni Village, Limpopo.
“I am Chief Nthumeni Mukhwevho from Thondoni village. This school [Netshimbupfe Secondary School] falls within the Thondoni village. With regards to the school, you can see the situation, this school has become old and dilapidated. This school was built a long time ago, in 1975 with the maswoli bricks (bricks that are made from mixing water and soil and then get to be burnt fire and cement).”
“This school as you look at it, it is not in a good condition. When children are around, they are not safe. Ceilings, walls or corrugated iron roof (zincs) might fall on them as you can see just by walking past that it has cracks. Since the media is here, we are pleading with you guys to try and speak to the government including the department that deals with infrastructures on our behalf so that they can come and inspect the school.”
“As you look at this school, it no longer has a lot of learners because they run away when they see the cracks and the roofs that have become damaged. The principal has already notified the department but still, nothing is being done. We don’t know what to do. At least back then it was easier because each household would pop out R50 and the money would be collected to build a school. Is the government perhaps battling to deliver services to us and want us to go back into the olden ways of doing things?”
(Compiled by Inside Education staff)