Mr Arendse should get his facts straight or find new and reliable sources for his “intel”

8 February 2019

Statement by Minister Debbie Schäfer

Mr Arendse should get his facts right before approaching media with his uninformed and wild accusations.  The accusations he makes are extremely serious and have no substance whatsoever.  

The facts as reported to me are as follows:  

On 1 February, near the close of the school day, a device of some sort was detonated in a classroom while teaching and learning was taking place. SAPS was immediately called in and the school contacted the Safe School Call Centre immediately. There was no attempt to “brush this under the carpet.” ALL relevant procedures were followed.

On the same day, a weapon was found in the cistern of the toilet. The weapon was then handed over to the principal who handed it over the police, as per procedure. The weapon was confiscated by the police.

There is no evidence that the two (the detonation in classroom and the gun) events were related.

Therefore all relevant procedures were followed.

As regards the allegation that the WCED asked that this be kept quiet, this is completely false. The Principal did, however, request his staff members not to broadcast this to everyone, as it was unclear at this stage if the two incidents were related. There is nothing unusual or suspect about this.

The following Monday, officials from the WCED arrived at the school to address learners and determine a strategy going forward.

The parents of the learners who “detonated” the device in the classroom were also at the school to discuss disciplinary procedures going forward.

The Department of Community Safety, the WCED and the City of Cape Town Law enforcement discussed a plan going forward to address any safety risks and advocacy that may be required.

It was decided that during this week the following would take place:

  • There will be advocacy prgrammes for learners
  • Communication to all parents explaining the process that will be followed at the school with regards to search and seizures
  • Assembly with the RCL and learners
  • Additional security provided by DoCs in terms of access control
  • Patrolling of perimeter fencing
  • Search and seizures at the gate
  • Security risk assessments
  • SAPS to be requested to do random patrols

We would like to thank the Department of Community Safety and the City of Cape Town Law Enforcement who are assisting us in securing the safety of learners and educators at the school.

Perhaps Mr Arendse should question the source of his “intel” before publishing such inaccurate information.

Media Enquiries:
Jessica Shelver
Tel: 021 483 6570
Cell: 076 175 0663
E-mail: Jessica.Shelver@westerncape.gov.za