A wild elephant went on an hour-long rampage in a town in eastern India on Wednesday..
PARENTS at Paul Mosaka Combined Primary School in Pimville, Soweto, yesterday locked the gates and refused a teacher entry, demanding that he be fired.
The parents want Grade 4 to 7 teacher Oriah Molapo removed for alleged misconduct.
School governing body (SGB) chairman Oupa Mafumane said: "This teacher has too many cases. We do not want him in our school anymore. If he comes back, there will be no schooling. We will keep our children at home. Last year the district promised us that by August he would be out of the school, but he is not."
Mafumane said Molapo was accused of walking into the girls toilets and hitting them.
"When the girls got home, they told their parents, who then complained to the school. How can a male teacher walk into the girls' bathroom, especially since they were not playing truant but were relieving themselves?
"We held several meetings with him and he said we could not tell him anything. He also said he will not listen to a female principal.
"At the end of the year, the school held its annual general meeting and parents decided that they did not want him anymore," he said.
On October 31, the SGB sent a memorandum to the district office asking for Molapo's urgent removal from the school.
The memorandum read: "This is a long overdue matter. At one stage we were given the impression that he is going to be removed from Paul Mosaka Primary School as he was identified as an additional teacher according to the post establishment. This is also for his own safety as the parents are angry and the matter has spread in the community."
Mafumane said Molapo also owed the school R2000 for lodging. "He used to live in one of the classrooms until last June. He was supposed to move out by March, but did not do so.
"The agreement was that he pay R200 a month to live in the classroom. He has not paid for months, so he owes the school R2000. He was allowed to live there because it was reasoned that Alexandra, were he lived, was far."
Molapo is also accused of sleeping in class during lessons.
"There were many instances where he slept in class while he was supposed to teach. We complained so many times and he did not take us seriously," Mafumane said.
A meeting between Molapo, the SGB, the district office and unions will be held at the school tomorrow. Mafumane is adamant they are not willing to compromise on Molapo's removal.
Education spokesman Charles Phahlane said the department is investigating allegations against the teacher.
"He is on precautionary suspension pending the finalisation of the investigation," Phahlane said. - firstname.lastname@example.org