Eastern Cape Education MEC Mandla Makupula has been summoned to the Legislature to account for severe workbooks shortages identified by the DA in the Port Elizabeth district. He will appear before the Portfolio Committee on Education on Friday.
It is clear that a situation similar to Limpopo is now developing in the Eastern Cape. The vast majority of schools contacted by the DA are experiencing massive shortages.
Our monitoring of the PE district warehouse confirms that no additional books have arrived in the province since last week.
Even though schools re-opened on Monday, only 569 additional boxes of books have arrived in the province to solve the shortage.
Schools will now get books on a first-come-first-serve basis. The Department is causing chaos with this approach because the orders that schools placed earlier this year are being ignored.
There were 25 370 literacy workbooks and 15 500 numeracy workbooks outstanding by Friday last week according to the Departments database for the PE district.
Schools are informing us that a substantial amount of Maths and Language workbooks for Grades R to 7 are needed.
Other schools have received books in the wrong language. A primary school in the district explained how they had received Xhosa books for Afrikaans learners.
Another Primary school with no third term workbooks told us how children had gone without books for the whole year due to the wrong stock arriving in the first and second terms as well.
The MEC must immediately give guarantees on when children will be getting their books or face a grilling in the legislature early next week.