#CoronavirusSA: Pupils relocated due to lack of sanitation
As schools reopen in South Africa with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, some are failing to meet basic levels of sanitation.
Pupils from Tours Primary School in Limpopo have been relocated to a nearby facility due to lack of toilets and poor infrastructure.
The school outside Tzaneen still uses pit toilets which are in a poor condition because it doesn’t have doors and water, while the 12 teachers – both male and female – share one toilet. According to the school principal, Mohlago Maake some pupils use bushes instead.
“Actually the toilets are non-existent, you won’t go behind there,” she says as she points to the decayed structures.
Not suitable at all
MEC for cooperative governance, human settlement and traditional affairs, Basikopo Makamu, was in the area to monitor the re-opening of schools to ensure that schools comply with Covid-19 regulations and measures put in place by government to prevent the spread of coronavirus. He was satisfied with other schools he visited across the province, but highlighted that Tours Primary School needs an urgent intervention.
“I have four districts [in] the province. I have been [to] Sekhukhune, Waterberg, Vhembe and Mopani. In Mopani I have [visited] three schools and my observation is that in general the actual teaching and learning … is possible and we are ready.”
“However in this school [Tours Primary School], I‘d like to commend the decision taken by the district to relocate learners because … teaching and learning was not possible in this facility mainly because there is absence of sanitation, [and the] challenge of water,” says Makamu.
However, he has indicated that he would communicate with the MEC for education, Polly Boshielo to address challenges the school is facing.
“I’m going to specifically write a letter to my colleague, [the] MEC for education in terms of how we [are] going to intervene. The school [has] enough classrooms and that is positive thing … the only challenges that we must resolve [are] the sanitation and water.”
He adds that he would directly deal with the matter to ensure the facility is operational and adequate to accommodate other grades as the minister of basic education, Angie Motshekga indicated that other grades would be gradually phased in. – Health-e News
For more information on Covid-19 in South Africa, you can call the toll-free line on 0800 029 999, or you can send a message that says “Hi” on WhatsApp to the number 060 012 3456. You can also visit the SA Coronavirus website.