Freedom Front Plus
Freedom Front Plus

Problems with basic education could make the youth populist cannon fodder

It’s the same problems year in and year out. The same advice is offered. The same failures follow. That is the sad story of basic education in South Africa, says adv. Anton Alberts, FF Plus parliamentary spokesperson for basic education.

Today, with the budget vote debate of the department of basic education, adv. Alberts said that the retrogression in our basic education is depriving the country’s youth of a liveable future and will eventually lead to populist politicians simply using them as cannon fodder.

He says that the country will not prosper economically as long as maths and science are progressively deteriorating. The country’s large number of youths should actually be considered demographical capital as they can form a young and dynamic labour force, especially seeing as developing countries’ usually have an ageing labour force.

“The youth should not be lead around by the nose by populist leaders that promise a Utopia, but deliver a Zimbabwe.

“A lot of the department’s problems are caused by the fact that many provincial MEC’s (members of executive committees) do not share the minister’s sentiments regarding basic education. During previous budget vote debates, the minister was strongly in favour of Afrikaans schools, mother tongue education as well as the necessity of building more schools.

“We would like to believe that she is still of the same opinion. More schools need to be built where people live and these schools must make provision for mother tongue education. Unfortunately, the provincial ministers do not agree with this.

“We find that many provinces, like Gauteng, do not consider building new schools a priority. The irony is that there are many existing school buildings standing vacant while the Gauteng MEC forces Afrikaans schools to accommodate English-speaking learners.

“When this sort of thing happens, we know that it is politically driven and has nothing to do with creating fair opportunities for all learners. MEC Panyaza Lesufi is so set on denouncing white people as racists that he has attempted to intimidate a kindergarten. He has even called on his Twitter followers to support him in their masses, even though the allegation of supposed racism is false.

“This eagerness to convict white people instead of building schools and utilising empty school buildings is clearly an attempt to demonise minority groups. Other minority groups, like the Afrikaans-speaking people of colour, are also very worried.

“In Davidsonville an English-speaking principal is appointed at an Afrikaans school with disastrous consequences. The coloured community have had enough and the minister needs to take note of this.

“Once again, the FF Plus requests that the minister commits herself to mother tongue education, building schools and utilising empty school buildings, while instructing the various provinces to support this commitment without detriment to minority groups,” says adv. Alberts.


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