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Pupils stone strikers

NANDA High School pupils in KwaZulu-Natal have clashed with suspected public service strikers who allegedly tried to disrupt their classes yesterday , police said.

KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson Colonel Vincent Mdunge said the pupils stoned the cars of the people, believed to be members of the South African Democratic Teachers Union.

"A group of people, believed to be Sadtu supporters, arrived in private cars. They made an attempt to disrupt classes," Mdunge said.

"Pupils became angry. They started stoning the cars and chased the people away."

Mdunge said the cars were extensively damaged.

"The police were called to the school."

No arrests were made and no criminal cases opened.

Provincial department of education spokesperson, Mbali Thusi, said the department was working with the police to ensure that pupils and teachers were safe.

She warned that pupils should not be disrupted during school hours.

"Children have a right to education," Thusi said. "Those not participating in the strike should be allowed to continue working."

Sadtu provincial deputy secretary, Siyabonga Mdletshe, said he was still waiting for a full report on what had transpired.

"We are sure it was not Sadtu members. We don't have a position to disrupt (classes).

"We are embarking on legal action - so that we can be able to picket and hold meetings," Mdletshe said.

"We can't speak on behalf of people who are being disruptive."

On Monday, people alleged to be protesting for better pay hikes for public servants forced several KwaZulu-Natal schools to send pupils home early after they went to different schools singing freedom songs and banging on school gates.


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