Representing the Gauteng provincial government in Lesufi’s place at the funeral proceedings on Saturday, community safety MEC Faith Mazibuko explained that a full forensic investigation was under way to probe the circumstances surrounding the young boy’s death.
“The recommendations (in the final report) will be implemented without fail,” she said, saying that she hoped the tragedy would allow the department to “fill the gaps” in the education department’s policies to protect learners.
She said the incident had forced the education department to relook at its extramural policies in particular.
Family friend Jean Bwasa said Enock, a South African born of Congolese parents, represented the general attitude towards “the African child”.
“I wish to convey this message to ... President Cyril Ramaphosa: he will be spearheading the African Union, but I see no African Union,” he said.
Bwasa said there was now no way for Enoch to speak out against the “gross negligence” that led to his death, and that Enoch should be a reminder that no child should die under such circumstances.
He called on Parktown Boys to launch a bursary programme in the child’s honour, as a reminder of how the system had failed him.
Representing the EFF was the party’s spokesperson, Mbuyiseni Ndlozi.
As he was summoned to the stage, dozens of the party’s members in the audience erupted into song.
Ndlozi told the crowd the loss of a child was the key sign “that we as a people are negligent”. He argued the family had sent their child to Parktown Boys because it was a “better” school, but he was ultimately a casualty of a broken system.
He said black families were forced to take their children to be educated by “racists” — or what he described as schools with white management — because government had failed to maintain other schools or build new ones.
While the EFF members loudly agreed with Ndlozi’s speech, Enoch’s parents just looked on, occasionally making eye contact with the speaker, but barely moving, Antu’s arms crossed as others in the hall screamed and waved their fists. It was only as Ndlozi concluded his speech that Guy offered a subdued clap.
Over the next few weeks, the Mpianzi family will be consulting with legal representatives — paid for by the EFF — over what is likely going to be a civil claim against the school and education department for the alleged negligence.