Media statement by the Ministry of Basic Education on the state of education in the Eastern Cape Department of Education
3 Mar 2011Programme Director
Deputy Minister Enver Surty
Premier Noxolo Kiviet
MEC Mandla Makupula
Director General Bobby Soobrayan
Superintendent General Modidima Mannya
Ladies and Gentlemen
Following consultations with the Premier of Eastern Cape, Noxolo Kiviet, the MEC for Education, Mandla Makupula, as well as the ruling party, coupled with our visit to the Eastern Cape on the 27th January 2011, all parties concur that an intervention is required to remediate the situation faced by the Eastern Cape Department of Education.
During our visit here last month, we received reports on the termination of temporary educators' contracts, suspension of scholar transport, non-delivery of textbooks and stationery as well as the poor implementation of the school nutrition programme. We agreed that a resolution of the problems in these areas be fast-tracked to ensure that learners and educators are not disadvantaged. Following our meeting with the Premier this morning, we noted the progress to improve service delivery in these critical areas. Our aim is to ensure that this progress is further accelerated through our intervention.
In his reply to the State of the Nation Address debate, President Jacob Zuma committed to giving serious consideration in providing sustainable intervention to the education challenges in the Eastern Cape. In has become clear that the conditions in education in the province amount to a serious challenge in terms of compliance with national policy, minimum norms and standards for education service delivery, the obligations arising from the constitution, the National Education Policy, 1996 (Act No 27 of 1996); the South African Schools Act, 1996 (Act No.84 of 1996) and relevant regulations formulated in terms of these statutes. In view of the seriousness of these challenges I am obliged, in terms of my statutory obligations as the Minister of Basic Education, to take the steps required to ensure a sustainable turnaround of basic education in the province.
We are pleased to state that we have since consulted with affected parties within the province as well as Cabinet on this matter. We agreed that a sustainable intervention is now inevitable. This sustainable intervention shall be based on the spirit of cooperative governance.
In its meeting on Wednesday, 2nd March 2011, Cabinet directed that the Ministry embarks on an intervention to address the challenges in education service delivery in the Eastern Cape Province. Cabinet directed that Section 100 of the constitution be used in order to provide the required constitutional and legal authority for this intervention. Cabinet was of the view that this intervention, which is made in the spirit of cooperative governance, will pave the way for an immediate resolution to all pressing problems in education service delivery in the province.
It is within this context that we have arrived at the following decisions:
- The province remains the key pillar of service provision and the intervention is not intended to displace this sphere of government.
- The intervention shall be for the benefit of the people of this province
- The exercise of intervening will be a collaborative approach and would provide support and direction to the provincial governance structures.
- The legal basis of our intervention shall occur through Section 100 (b) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996.
We remain convinced that our intervention must result in the creation of long-term capacity in the department and a sustainable turnaround of education service delivery in the province. This should include the creation of positive and sustainable changes at a systemic level to achieve efficiency and stability in the Provincial Department of Education.
We are hopeful that these decisions now pave the way for an immediate resolution to all pressing matters. We will shortly announce the composition of a team that will work with the provincial leadership to pave the path for quality education through this intervention.
The Ministry, the Premier and the MEC shall oversee and monitor progress in terms of this intervention.
Issued by: Ms Angie Motshekga, MP, Minister of Basic Education, in concurrence with Ms Noxolo Kiviet, Premier of the Eastern Cape Province
For more information kindly contact:
Cell: 083 383 4517
Issued by: Department of Basic Education
3 Mar 2011
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