Ikhwezi Lokusa- A Dimmed Dawn Under the ANC For Mthatha Special Needs School

6th October 2023

The recent second media exposé by Carte Blanche, revealing what happens behind the not-so-secure fences at Ikwezi Lokusa Special School in Mthatha, is sadly a metaphor for what has happened to this province under 30 years of ANC maladministration.

When the responsible departmental official couldn’t answer straightforward questions about why conditions hadn’t improved and had in fact deteriorated, he defaulted to challenging Carte Blanche as to how they gained access to the school. Sadly, it appears that perennial sexual predators have had free and unfettered access to the school and the children that are supposed to be in the care of the State.

When we as ActionSA visited facility this week there wasn’t a soul on the campus, we were told that the children had been taken to a local hotel to engage with social workers. The question that is wringing in our heads is, why did the social workers not meet the children at the place where they “live” so that they could also assess the “living conditions”, which have been exposed as inhumane?

We went into an ablution facility opposite a dormitory of brick beds and there was no water in the toilets, or the taps and the ablutions had clearly not been cleaned for months.

Everything in this institution is in state beyond dereliction and judging from the plaques on the walls successive governments and parastatal organisations have been ploughing funding into this place, yet everything is ramshackle and it’s hard to believe that children who require special care are accommodated or incarcerated here.

We saw two school busses parked on bricks that are beyond repair as are the laundry facilities and the fire hydrants that have no water in them.

In ActionSA we demand ethical leadership at every level of government and what we have experienced at Ikhwezi Lakusa is far from any reflection of ethical leadership.

We believe that those responsible for this travesty must be charged for dereliction of duty and responsibility and furthermore that this government that has allowed this must be replaced at the soonest opportunity which is next year in the 2024 elections.

 

Issued by ActionSA Eastern Cape Provincial Chairperson, Athol Trollip