Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi has slammed plans for an Pretoria-based Afrikaans-only university that is set to open in 2020.
Lesufi recently retweeted a video in which he criticised the idea of the Afrikaans-medium university, saying that a “race-based institution” would not work in South Africa.
Gauteng’s Education MEC believes the new Afrikaans institution would remind the country about apartheid.
“I just hate racism when I see one! A race-based institution in a non-racial society won’t succeed. Please don’t remind us about apartheid,” Lesufi tweeted.
Earlier this year, trade union Solidarity announced plans to build its new Sol-Tech university campus in Centurion.
The project is set to cost R300 million, according to reports.
Solidarity COO Dirk Hermann said the project is funded through donations from the community.
“The strength of Sol-Tech and of this campus lies in the fact that it is being built by the community. Thousands of members of the public donate smaller amounts each month to make the building of institutions such as Sol-Tech possible,” Hermann said.
The DA said it supports Solidarity’s plan.
In an interview with a Cape Town-based radio station, Lesufi said the university was started “out of anger” after institutions across the country started “changing their language policies to promote inclusivity.”
He said that he was not attacking Afrikaans but felt that the message that the new university was sending is negative.
“We’re not saying this because we are attacking Afrikaans but because the message of ‘we only need one language’ is bad.”