Tom Stokes, MPP
DA KZN Spokesperson on Education
The Democratic Alliance will, during a sitting of the KZN Legislature on Friday, question Premier, Zweli Mkhize, over how the provincial ANC leadership plans to confront head-on a go-slow by teacher union, Sadtu. In addition, the DA will ask the Premier how many hours of teaching time were lost during the past year as a result of strike action and whether he and his cabinet believe that teacher unions should have the right to strike. According to Rule 107 of the provincial Legislature, members of a political party may pose oral summary questions to the Premier at the end of each financial year.
The questions are aimed at testing whether the Premier has addressed the most important issues of the previous year. Sadtu’s denial of a “go slow” amid claims that its members will teach for the required seven hours and no more are perplexing given that the Employment of Educators Act and conditions of service requires that they work beyond the seven hours of teaching.
The answers we receive from the Premier on Friday will show whether the provincial leadership has the political will to take a stand against Sadtu. They will also tell us whether the cabinet fully realises the devastating impact that Sadtu’s ongoing meddling is having on future generations. The DA expects the Premier and his cabinet to denounce Sadtu’s actions. We expect the Premier to have a strategy in place – one which deals swiftly and harshly with any teacher union member who disrupts teaching time. The ANC leadership in KwaZulu-Natal cannot be seen to support a political game being played at the expense of learners.