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Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Des Van Rooyen. Picture Credit: Gallo Images
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School principal's R100000 lawsuit

By McKeed Kotlolo | Jun 09, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

ALEX "China" Ratlhogo, the principal of Moretele Primary School in Mamelodi, is suing the treasurer of his school's governing body for R100000.

He claims Charles Mokoena had defamed him by influencing members of the governing body to believe that he had stolen 15 boxes of copy paper from the school.

The boxes were reported missing from the school's office in 2006. Mokoena and the board's former chairperson, Onismas Tshoga, laid a charge of theft against Ratlhogo in May 2007, but the case was dismissed after three hearings in the Mamelodi magistrate's court.

Ratlhogo, who spent 14 years at the school as a teacher and six years as principal, said he was suing Mokoena for defamation of character. He accused Mokoena of fabricating the allegations to have him fired.

Ratlhogo said the treasurer had influenced other members of the governing body to lay the charge of theft against him. He claimed the allegations continued even after the case was dismissed.

Efforts to contact Mokoena were unsuccessful.

Sam Makgobathe, the governing body's new chairperson, confirmed Mokoena had received legal papers from Ratlhogo's attorneys a month ago.

He said this prompted the governing body to convene a parents' meeting on May 31 to discuss the matter and also to seek the department's advice.

The Gauteng education department said it was unaware of the lawsuit but would investigate the matter.


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