by Safiyia Stanfley – DA Northern Cape Spokesperson of Education
Date: 24 November 2017
Type: Press Statement
The DA will request Northern Cape MEC of Education, Martha Bartlett, to launch an investigation into suspected fraud involving a Kimberley high school’s feeding scheme.
This comes amidst suspicions that funds intended to feed needy learners at Homevale High School are instead being spent on Christmas groceries for those connected to the institution’s feeding scheme.
The DA has learnt that for the greater part of the fourth quarter, learners participating in the school’s feeding scheme have received nothing but peanut butter sandwiches. This, while the food handlers continue to receive the same amount of funding as before, giving them no reason to cut the provision of meals to learners.
On top of this, the DA has learnt that the same school’s management overruled the School Governing Bodies (SGB) selection of a caterer for the Matric dance, instead giving the job to the same food handler.
The Education Department has responded to the matter, suggesting that the peanut butter sandwiches are the result of acute stock control, to prevent wastage ahead of the school’s upcoming closure.
The DA does not accept this excuse.
Meals for learners should be balanced throughout the year, even on the eve of school holidays. Giving learners bread and butter so that those in control of the food can take home roast beef and turkey, is completely unacceptable.
The DA will write to MEC Bartlett asking that she institutes an investigation into the grant funds for the National School Nutrition Programme.
We want to know why the food handler has failed to comply with acceptable menu options; what the percentage of expenditure on the feeding scheme is, where the surplus funds have gone, and who exactly is benefitting from the scheme. We also want to know why school management decided to undermine the SGB’s decision relating to the appointment of a caterer.
Learners deserve to reap the benefits of conditional grant funding that has been exclusively set aside to ensure that children, who go to sleep and wake up hungry at home, are at least presented with nutritious meals at school. The selfish and conscienceless people who dare steal food from their mouths deserve to be harshly dealt with.
DA Northern Cape Spokesperson of Education
084 919 4157
Shelley De Witt
082 847 1387