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Department of Education wastes R1,7million on out of date app

November 30th, 2020

The Eastern Cape Department of Education has wasted R1,7million on an application, named Sikuncede Njani, that is outdated and therefore serves no real purpose. In response to a parliamentary question from the DA, MEC of Education, Fundile Gade, said the app is currently up to date with relevant information that can be utilised by the public and officials of the Department. SEE: IQP 32 2nd session replies Q 766 Link …

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Patensie school finally opens after DA intervention

November 18th, 2020

I am extremely excited for the learners of Patensie, who have finally been able to take occupation of their new school building, which was built for them over a year ago, but which had been standing vacant because of delays by the Education Department. The building of the school was part of the national Accelerated School Infrastructure Delivery Initiative (ASIDI) programme which aimed to eradicate schools built with inappropriate and …

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BCM learners share cramped school ground as project stalls

November 13th, 2020

Hundreds of young learners from Laerskool Grens in Arcadia, Buffalo City are being crammed into overcrowded classrooms, because work on the new school they were promised four years ago has ground to a halt. This situation has been further exacerbated as the Department has annexed half of the current school grounds for the Buffalo City Inner City School, which is now also operating off the same premises. Effectively, due to …

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Health Department must step up to assist Matrics writing exams

November 5th, 2020

The Department of Health must step up and assist schools where matriculants have started writing examinations, to help providing isolation areas and invigilation for learners to write exams who might be carrying the virus. The Democratic Alliance has noted that, despite matric exams starting today, the Health Department is nowhere to be seen, even though they were mandated to provide the necessary assistance. Not only are learners scared of catching …

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Brand-new Patensie school vacant for over a year

October 21st, 2020

A brand-new school that was built by the Department of Education in Patensie, has been standing empty for over a year, while learners who are meant to benefit from it are still forced to attend schools with woefully inadequate infrastructure. The building of the school was part of the national Accelerated School Infrastructure Delivery Initiative (ASIDI) programme which aimed to eradicate schools built with inappropriate and unsafe materials. A programme …

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Education Department digs in heels over e-learning contract, at taxpayers’ expense

October 17th, 2020
Yusuf Cassim

The Eastern Cape Department of Education refuses to admit its mistakes and self-correct with respect to the irregular E-learning procurement contract entered into with Sizwe Africa IT Group, despite a court interdict pending a full review. This became clear during a sitting of the portfolio committee on Education, requested by the Democratic Alliance, which met on Thursday to consider the implications of the interdict and pending review. The DA has …

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DA intervention secures much-needed repairs to Stutterheim Wastewater Treatment Works

October 8th, 2020

The Democratic Alliance is extremely pleased that the Wastewater Treatment Works in the Amahlathi Local Municipality has been repaired, and that the electricity grid to the plant has been upgraded, following our calls for intervention. Since December 2019, the wastewater treatment plant had no electricity. In February this year, a generator was installed by the Amatole District Municipality, which was only capable of providing electricity to treat less than half …

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Education portfolio committee must discuss interdict implications

October 7th, 2020

The interdict by Judge Buyiswa Majiki, to immediately stop the implementation of the controversial R538 million contract, between the Sizwe Africa IT Group, MTN and the Department, has serious implications for learners across the province. The Democratic Alliance has repeated raised its concerns regarding this contract, in various Legislature forums, since it was first tabled in the portfolio committee. The DA wants to build an education system in the Eastern …

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Ugie school suffers while Department blows infrastructure budget on overpriced PPE

September 16th, 2020

The Ugie based ET Thabane Primary School is, quite literally, falling apart at the seams, but its cries for help over the past seven years have fallen on deaf ears, with the Eastern Cape Department of Education simply ignoring their plight. Instead, the Department has spent over R578 million of its infrastructure budget for the current year, purchasing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at highly inflated prices from connected cadres, paying …

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Wetland invaders placing themselves at risk

September 15th, 2020

Land invaders who have illegally settled on a stretch of wetland in the Bushmans area have placed their own lives at risk, as they have built their homes in an area prone to flooding. Even more disconcerting is that they have allegedly done so with the permission of local government officials. Yesterday I conducted an oversight inspection in the area, accompanied by local DA councillors Jocelyn Guest and Phil Kani, …

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