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Students take a stand against potential strike

Following a recent media release by a disgruntled Collen Malatji, the Congress of South African Students (COSAS) Chairperson, students have decided to take a stand against, what they feel, is an unwarranted strike by teachers in Ekurhuleni.

31 July 2012 | Lesego Puso

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Every year the South African Democratic Teachers Union's (Sadtu) national strikes put a halt on the schools' curriculum and it seems as though students have had enough.

According to Malatji's media statement, Sadtu, in Ekurhuleni, have plans to go on a regional strike in support of Sadtu Secretary Paul "Bazooka" Mbhele who has been suspended from his duties as Principal of Kuzimisela School in Daveyton.

In the media release Malatji calls upon students to refuse to allow teachers, who go on this alleged strike, to return back to schools.

"We call upon all students in all corners of Gauteng to guard and monitor any teacher who leaves our school premises so that they don't come back to our premises because they have shown themselves to be self-centered and not caring about the future of the black child," stated Malatji.

According to Malatji, Cosas met with the provincial representatives of Sadtu on June 29.

"The conclusion of the meeting was that Sadtu would not go on strike but I have heard rumours that there is a go-slow that some teachers in the townships are involved in," says Malatji.

He believes that these teachers are sabotaging the futures of their students as they will fall behind on their work and may never catch up.

"In the past our education system was oppressed by the law and now, that we have the opportunity to make up for this, these strikes threaten the futures of our children.

"I think it may be best to have education declared as an essential service as it may be the only way to protect children's rights to a proper education," he says.

At the time of publishing, Sadtu provincial secretary Tshidiso Ledimo was unavailable to comment.

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