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Basic Education Dept backs probe into drowning of pupil at camp

May 5th 2021 at 11:35

The Department of Basic Education has called on the South African Police Service (SAPS) to consider opening a criminal case, after a 15-year-old learner drowned during a camping trip organised by non-profit organisation, Equal Education.

The pupil, Avethandwa Nokhangela from Xolani High School in the Eastern Cape, had been taking part in an activity and was on a leadership camp trip along with 30 other learners, at Palm Ridge Holiday Resort, near East London.

Her body was found after being swept out at sea on Thursday, 29 April 2021.

β€œThe DBE supports MEC for Education in the Eastern Cape, Mr Fundile Gade, who has called for a full investigation into the circumstances that led to the death of the learner,” the department’s Elijah Mhlanga said in a statement.

β€œThe Department in the province received information from the South African Police Service about the incident after the body of the learner was recovered from one of the Buffalo Metro beaches. The delay by Equal Education in reporting the matter to the Provincial Education Department raises serious concerns”

Department of Basic Education spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga

Eastern Cape pupil drowning: DBE wants criminal probe

According to the Department of Basic Education, Equal Education only made contact on Friday, 30 May 2021. The department has called for a thorough investigation into the teenage girl’s drowning to ensure that all the facts are established and that those found responsible must be held to account.

β€œThe provincial Department has already sent officials to the school to arrange psychosocial support to learners and particularly those who attended the Equal Education event including those left behind at school, educators and the parents of the learner,” Mhlanga further said.

The Department of Basic Education has also expressed condolences to the girl’s family and community. For many, this incident is eerily similar to the death of Enoch Mpianzi, the Parktown Boys High School pupil who also drowned while at camp.

Mpianzi’s death gripped many South Africans and an investigation into the incident found that there had certainly been negligence on the part of the school, as well as the Nyati Bush and Riverbreak camp coordinators, who had failed to appropriately provide oversight. His body was only recovered days later on 17 January 2020, with his disappearance understood to have gone unnoticed for a prolonged period of time.

Noncedo Madubedube: A fighter for equal education

April 25th 2021 at 15:00

Noncedo Madubedube was exposed to inequality in the school system when she was a girl. Now she is at the forefront of the battle for equality

The post Noncedo Madubedube: A fighter for equal education appeared first on The Mail & Guardian.

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