Gauteng Department of Education needs to answer for failed school-feeding scheme

Dion George MP

DA Constituency Head

Today, myself and DA Gauteng Education Spokesperson, Khume Ramulifho MPL, visited Diepsloot to assess the Muzomuhle Primary School feeding scheme. During several visits to the school over the past few weeks, I discovered that the learners have received little to no food; for many of the learners, their school meal is the only food they receive on any given day.

Today, we were shown the food storage unit and menus for the weeks’ meals. It was clear from the seriously depleted storeroom that the learners will not be receiving what has been indicated on the menus for this week. In fact, today, they will get less than half of the stipulated food items, including no fresh fruit or vegetables. On previous occasions they have received no food at all.

The school feeding scheme is contracted through the Provincial Education Department and has recently been renewed with a new supplier. Serious questions need to be asked regarding why these children are not receiving their stipulated meals on a daily basis. Just today the Gauteng Provincial Government placed an advertisement in the Sowetan newspaper claiming to deliver free education and a meal a day to 1.1 million learners in Gauteng. The learners of Muzomuhle Primary school are obviously not part of this 1.1 million.

My colleague, Khume Ramulifho MPL, will be asking questions to officials in the Provincial Education department regarding the new contract, how many schools supposedly benefit from this and exactly what supplies should be provided to each school. The DA in the province will also be assessing whether other schools are suffering from similar circumstances. Something has gone seriously wrong at some point within this feeding scheme and the children are now suffering as a result. This is completely unacceptable and the department of Education needs to answer for the failure.

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