- Dalibango Primary thought that the government had stepped up to the plate after construction had started on new toilets
- With the old pit latrines demolished, and temporary toilets removed after the Department of Education failed to foot the bill, the school is now worse off than before
- Students are now forced to relieve themselves in bushes and teachers are concerned for their safety
An Eastern Cape school has been left hanging by the Department of Education with no ablution facilities available for primary school students.
Dalibango Primary, where a child had almost drowned in a pit toilet, has now been left with no facilities at all.
The old pit latrines had been demolished in favor of adequate facilities, with temporary ones put in place for the meantime. But the department has failed to pay the bills and now even the temporary loos have been removed, reported News24.
14 toilets had been hired by the department after a 4-year-old child had almost died, with preparations made in favor of the new buildings.
Thembile Phiti, school governing body chair, has confirmed that the company hiring out the toilets has since removed them, claiming that no payment had been received since the beginning of the year:
“We are very disappointed. We were beginning to appreciate the help from our government. We don’t know what to do anymore. The children are now forced to relieve themselves in the bushes. We are very worried especially for the young ones, who are not safe."
Phiti says that the principal had met with the school board and would try and meet with parents in an attempt to find a way forward.
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The school feels that the government has failed them, unable to do something as simple as providing toilets for the rural school.
Provincial education spokesperson Malibongwe Mtima confirmed that the school had been identified for assistance, but that the department was under enormous strain to fund the replacement of all inadequate school infrastructure, which he says requires R70.1 billion.
“We can assure the school community that the matter is receiving attention. The department is doing everything possible to ensure that the dignity of the educators and learners of this school is upheld and restored.”
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