UThukela District Municipality


26 January 2022



Media Statement

26 January 2022


As the schools open their doors for a new academic year, the KZN Legislature deployed its members to various parts of the Province to ensure the new school year starts without any glitches and also to observe the state of readiness. Today they visited two schools in Alfred Duma municipality as part of annual monitoring programme. The first stop was at Harvest HS. Members of the Legislature led by Honourable TV Xulu , Uthukela District Deputy Mayor Cllr MH Shange, Education department and other critical stakeholders were part of the event.

The purpose of the programme was to assess the state of readiness for the 2022 academic year. This also ensures that teaching and learning happens on the first day of the opening. The programme helps to gain first- hand information on the challenges faced by the schools. The focus is on effective teaching and learning process, availability of key resources and staffing among other things. Teacher-Learner support material, parent involvement in school matters and infrastructure is also on the agenda.

In his presentation of the school functionality profile, the Principal Mr Hagan Nash mentioned that the school is on the premises rented by the trust and a member of of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) and accredited with uMalusi. The enrolment of the school is 332 with the pass rate of 94% in 2021. The Principal went on to say that the school is providing caring, discipline environment where students feel safe to learn, where children can grow, develop and discover their potential and hard work. The school is transitioning to E- books through Snappligy and our Engage Platform.

Deputy Mayor Cllr Shange appreciated the good work done by the school and said, "I'm impressed with the achievement of the school and we should adopt the e-book system to assist government schools to perform even better". The monitoring and evaluation is even more important now that the country is still battling with the covid -19 pandemic

Last stop was at Colenso Combined School where the school is faced with plethora of challenges that needed decisive government intervention.The Legislature was not happy with what they saw in the school in terms the conditions of the school. The school principal Mr ML Magubane requested the review of the school as the capacity of the school is bigger than the structure. The structure itself is old and there are no playing grounds and the fancing is falling down.

The Principal also mentioned that there is high pregnancy and 11 dropped out of school last year and the growing tendency of substance abuse. Water shortages and ablution facilities were also a challenge. The programme itself is in fulfilment of the constitutional mandate to perform oversight and is undertaken at the beginning of the school year.

Meanwhile another team of officials went to visit two schools in Okhahlamba Local Municipality, namely; Tholithemba HS and Okhombe PS. The team was led by Members of the Legislature Hon Sbonisa Duma, Hon Otto Kunene and Uthukela District Speaker Cllr TY Nqubuka and top officials. The purpose as outlined by Hon Duma was to monitor schools functioning in the district as per Speaker of the Legislature's instruction.

He said the district has done well over the years in terms of goods results. "We also want to monitor if the stakeholders, in particular those who form part of the OSS are functioning properly within the communities and schools. As the Legislature we involve a variety of stakeholders to be part of the programme. We also want to get inputs from stakeholders to get a sense of what needs to be addressed. We are not here for a fact finding mission but to build", said Hon Duma.

Infrastructure becomes vital in order for the schools to become a success. Tholithemba Principal Nhlapho was confident that the school is ready for the academic year as programmes are in place. They do have teachers but would like to beef up more staff members on critical subjects like Maths and Science. Because of the PNN the school is faced with challenges in terms of learner enrolment.

Stationary and text books are delivered on time. Text books retrieval system is working positively as they're making it well. The school feels it is overcharged for electricity consumption. He said school finances are well managed. In terms of COVID-19 compliance the school has installed Jojo tanks so that learners can wash their hands.

They have catch-up programmes aimed to assist learners with their subjects. It is very effective to assist progressed learners, in particular. The school also has evening classes. School performance for 2021 matric
150 matriculants registered with 83% pass rate. The school is also faced with challenges which includes teenage pregnancy, drug abuse, bullying but are being attended to.

Next stop was a Mayoral programme, where the Mayor Cllr Inkosi NB Shabalala visited Ward 6 to address water challenges. He started at Inkosi Miya Traditional Authority to inform him about the upcoming project in the area. "We are here not just for the sake of visit but to work in the Ward and its surrounding areas. This area has an abundance of water in the form of springs. So we want to make those springs accessible to the people so as to get water supply", said Mayor Shabalala. He informed Inkosi Miya and his subject that they will be protecting spring in the area but this was a temporary measure aiming to bring water to the people.

Long term plan is to abstract water from the Busingatha River. The Mayor urged the community to advise if there are any other springs in the area so that they can be protected as water source. He said they will be trimming down on wasteful expenditure in order to save money. He touched on the issue of employment but mentioned that currently there are no vacancies though they are working on changing the status quo. Inkosi Miya raised the issues of water challenges facing his subjects and raised the alarm on the water tank that was struck by lightning. The Mayor also said he would be pleased if the Mayor could have a look at the issue.

Thereafter the Mayor visited Businga and Obonjaneni communities to inform them about water project. He told them that there is a spring up in the mountain that was identified as water source but it is a temporary measure as they aim to find a long term solutionby utilizing Busingatha River to abstract water that will be stored in four Jojo tanks after purification.

About 20 temporary job opportunities will be created for the locals. The project is envisaged to take up to three months to complete. "We want to get rid of water tankers as they are too expensive to operate. They will only be used in emergencies. Operation of water tankers will be closely monitored to avoid the allegations of drivers selling water", concluded the Mayor.


Issued by: Jabulani Mkhonza and Sindi Mvelase
Communications Unit
Uthukela District Municipality
Cell: 072 175 5650