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School classes burnt down, says community members

Katlehong Primary School was allegedly set on fire by service delivery protesters on July 4.

The incident happened a few days before the schools reopened for the third term. This leaves two Grade R class rooms affected with learners stranded.

The school principal Ben Sidwaba said when he received a call on the same day of the incident on Thursday afternoon that the school was on fire, he was home in Dawn Park.


SA’s schools turn into danger zones

“Immediately I went to the school to see what was happening. On my arrival, I found community members and the police assisting the firefighters to contain the fire,” said Sidwaba.

The classrooms were burnt to the ground.

Sidwaba said he did not know what they would do to accommodate the Grade R learners when the school reopened.

“But we hope the department is going to provide us with mobile classes so that teaching and learning will continue,” Sidwaba said.

Speaking to Kathorus MAIL, Sidwaba said as the head of the school he was in the dark as to what caused the fire, despite claims by some community members that the fire was allegedly caused by service delivery protesters.

“We have already opened the case at the Katlehong Police Station,” he said.

Asked if he believed this was the work of service delivery protesters, Sidwaba said it was difficult to tell what happened, but the police were investigating.


Public protests to be dealt with using Nyalas

A resident, Asavela Magida, who lives nearby the school, said the community members had nothing to do with the burning down of the school.

Katlehong SAPS communications officer Capt Mega Ndobe said the police were investigating a case of arson.

“No one has been arrested,” Ndobe said.

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