Premier to intervene in textbook shortage

Alfred Moselakgomo

Alfred Moselakgomo

Mpumalanga Premier Thabang Makwetla has vowed to personally intervene in the textbook shortage situation in the province.

Makwetla's spokesman, Ntime Skosana, said the premier has undertaken to give the issue his immediate attention.

"This marks the essence of democracy and highlights the importance of the legislative oversight role played by all political parties, including the ruling party, in strengthening service delivery," Skosana said.

Sowetan reported last month that with two weeks before the end of the first school term, only 13percent of Mpumalanga schools had received all their necessary learner-teacher support materials (LTSM) and textbooks.

We reported that only 13,77percent of 1869 schools have received complete orders of LTSM.

The report followed complaints from pupils and parents that up to six students shared one textbook, giving new meaning to the phrase "to share one's knowledge".

The premier sprung into action after receiving a letter from the DA drawing his attention to the problem.

The monitoring of the delivery of textbooks, done on a weekly basis, showed that 46percent of the textbooks have not yet reached their destination, with suppliers being blamed as the main culprits.

The DA's Anthony Bernadie said: "Unless textbooks and learner materials are delivered urgently, the ability of pupils to prepare effectively for mid-year examinations will be seriously compromised."