The Department of Basic Education (DBE) welcomes the comprehensive report by Prof Mary Metcalfe. The DBE believes that the report adequately captures the complexities of the section 100 (1)(b) intervention in the Limpopo province and the difficulties experience by national government in terms of the provision of textbooks to schools in Limpopo.
The Department has noted the recommendations and findings of this report and will carefully consider these to ensure that the processes of procurement and distribution of LTSM in the Limpopo province are strengthened. We are aware that the non-availability of school personnel during the school holidays made it very difficult for the team to accurately verify and audit deliveries at school level. The Department of Basic Education is committed to continue with this process of verification.
We concur that more work must be done in the province to improve the entire value chain of LTSM procurement and delivery in Limpopo. The Limpopo Department has already initiated the process to ensure that textbooks for the 2013 school year are available when schools re-open in January.
The Department is awaiting the reports of the task teams established by the President and the Premier of Limpopo, respectively, whose work is on-going. Once these reports have been received, the Department of Basic Education will issue a comprehensive response.
The DBE appreciates the urgency with which Prof Metcalfe and her team approached the investigation, given the public interest in this matter. Again, we welcome the report and thank Ms Metcalfe and her team for their dedication to this very important task.