DA: Statement by Jacques Smalle, Democratic Alliance Limpopo Leader, Limpopo children send letters to Zuma with regard to the use of public money (04/11/2012)

4th November 2012

The Democratic Alliance will deliver over 1000 letters from Limpopo school children to President Zuma’s Nkandla residence today.

The letters to the President describe the difficult and often tragic learning conditions in Limpopo schools. The DA calls on the President to personally read every single one of these letters so that he can be reminded of what the real priorities of government spending should be.

A recurring theme in the DA’s community work is that Limpopo children desperately want an outlet to express their feelings about the neglect of their learning environments.

Children are the victims of the Limpopo education crisis but have the least opportunities to make their voices heard.

For this reason, the DA started collecting these letters in mid-July 2012 from children in the Tzaneen, Mopani, Letaba, Phalaborwa and Maruleng districts in the province.

Today we are delivering the letters directly to Nkandla, where R238 million of public money is being used to construct the President’s ultra-luxury private compound.

Limpopo learners have gone without textbooks for almost an entire year while public money is continuously wasted by government, led by President Zuma.

One of the letters from Ruth Bopape (17) at Appel Combined School reads:

“To the President: I would love you to hear about my problems and read them. At our school, we don’t have enough teachers, transport to school, money for paying electricity at our school.  We need you as a President to come and see our school. Yours faithfully, Ruth Bopape”

Another from Dimpho (13) in Tzaneen reads:

“I would like to tell you that we need a school bus and sports field at our school but what our country has turned into is not good because you are making our parents pay more tax to build houses for your wives”

During the course of today the DA will give these children platform to make their voices heard by releasing the letters from the party’s official Twitter account: @DA_News –#LettersToNkandla.

We hope that these letters will make the President realise the errors in his ways. Limpopo children desperately need a government that takes their education seriously.

They need a governing party and a President with the skill and compassion to turn the education crisis in Limpopo around.