South Africa: Thug teachers strike and disrupt schools
It shouldn’t surprise you that the schools that were disrupted by striking black teachers were majority white schools. These thug “teachers” decided to break into schools which were trying to do their job and to slap around some teachers and scare the kids. Nice! This is what South Africa has been reduced to – when these blacks aren’t happy with their lot in life they strike and destroy. I’m still waiting for the condemnation from the ANC government about this thuggery and the moral deficiency from the “teachers” – the same people charged with educating the youth. If this had happened during Apartheid and to black kids there would have been international outrage and sanctions!
Pretoria – Chaos broke out at several primary and high schools in the Vaal Triangle on Monday morning when striking teachers gained illegal access to the schools and intimidated teachers and pupils.
Beeld (local newspaper) has learned that there was disorder and that some schools were damaged, including Vereeniging High School, General Smuts High School, Riverside High School, Selborne Primary and Handhawer Primary School.
Witnesses fear further victimisation and attacks and they all asked to remain anonymous.
Chris Klopper, chair of the independent labour caucus (ILC) condemned the protests on Monday and said the behaviour is completely unacceptable.
A Grade 10 pupil from Vereeniging High School said they had been writing a test when about one hundred protesters, presumably teachers from other schools, stormed into their classrooms and started pushing and shoving people around.
They were all told to go to the stand at the sports field.
According to the pupil, the protesters were aggressive and were carrying vuvuzelas and sticks.
“We were quite scared so we did as they said.”
Female teacher slapped
The boy alleges he saw some of the protesters slap a female teacher in the face and tear up their test papers.
A mother of a 17-year-old pupil told Beeld in an email that her daughter was hysterical when she phoned her mother and told her about the events.
“The children were also threatened and told they would get hurt if they phone their parents. I’m 15km from the school and it feels like I’m losing my mind, not sure whether my children are safe or not!”
A teacher at General Smuts High School explained how protesters cut the school’s fence and trampled it to gain access to the property.
This group, armed with sjamboks (plastic whip) among other things, broke windows and threw rubbish bins from the first floor.
He said pupils had been denied their right to education and the teachers were not allowed to do their work.
“What has happened to this country’s morals?
“I was accused of being a racist and one of the protesters told me that we’re not in the era of apartheid anymore and that it (the protest) has nothing to do with me.”
Beeld heard that many pupils and teachers went home early out of fear for their safety. Some of them are also too scared to return on Tuesday, since the protesters have threatened to burn down schools.
This illegal action contradicts the decision taken earlier by unions to provisionally strike only for one day (last Tuesday).
The unions will announce on Tuesday whether they will accept the State’s salary increase offer of 7% and a housing allowance of R700 per month.
Paul Colditz, chief executive of the Federation of Governing Bodies of South African Schools (Fedsas), expressed his “shock and condemnation of this barbaric behaviour”.
He recommended that schools who are members of Fedsas call in the help of the police.
He said if there’s an emergency situation, governing bodies should close schools and obtain an interdict against the protesters.
Charles Phahlane, spokesperson for the Gauteng department of education, said the department condemns the disruption of learning and teaching and the destruction of property at the schools.