Parents urged to help curb violence at Limpopo schools

Picture is just for illustration purposes. Images such as this are haunting Limpopo schools, resulting in some pupils being injured on school premises.
Picture is just for illustration purposes. Images such as this are haunting Limpopo schools, resulting in some pupils being injured on school premises.

The violence at schools in Limpopo in the past month has left one pupil dead and two others injured.

A 16-year-old pupil will appear in the Thohoyandou Magistrate's Court today for attempted murder after a fellow pupil was shot on the school premises in the latest incident.

The victim, 18, was rushed to a local hospital where he is recovering.

Police Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said the 16-year-old got hold of his father's firearm and brought it to school.

"He then shot his fellow pupil, aged 18, during an alleged heated argument at the school premises. The incident took place at the toilets of Denga Tshivhase High School, which is situated at Phiphidi village in Thohoyandou."

Mojapelo said the boy's father was arrested and will face charges of attempted murder and negligent keeping of a firearm.

"Additional charges of unlawful possession of firearm and ammunition have been added after it came to light that the 37-year-old suspect does not have the necessary licence for the said firearm," he said.

The provincial department of education said it was concerned about the rising acts of violence in schools and has called for societal activism in curbing the scourge.

Department spokesman Sam Makondo has pleaded with parents to search their children's school bags to check for weapons.

"These weapons are taken from homes to schools, hence we call on parents to assist us in making schools a safer place for all learners," Makondo said.

"We will raise awareness about learners' conduct in schools and learners should know that there are severe consequences when one brings a dangerous weapon to school."

Last week, a Grade 9 pupil appeared in the Senwabarwana Magistrate's Court after he stabbed another pupil, 18, to death with a sharp instrument in a classroom. The incident happened in Malebogo High School, outside Polokwane.

Recently, a Grade 11 pupil from Mbhekwana High School in Nwamitwa was hospitalised after his stomach was ripped open by another pupil in what police have described as an act of bullying.

Mojapelo said members of the community, especially parents and guardians, were advised and encouraged to ensure that children go to school unarmed.

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