Bax Nodada gives 5 reasons why Education Minister Angie Motshekga must be fired

The DA’s Baxolilie Nodada says South Africa deserves better education for its youth than has been provided by Angie Motshekga. File Picture

The DA’s Baxolilie Nodada says South Africa deserves better education for its youth than has been provided by Angie Motshekga. File Picture

Published Oct 31, 2023


The Democratic Alliance's (DA) Baxolilie Nodada said Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga's failures and disappointments were contributing to the 3.4 million young people's lack of employment, education, and proper training.

"Her failure is contributing to the 3.4 million young people not in employment, education, or training, and more than 60% of 15- to 24-year-olds not having jobs at all, likely because the minister and her department failed to provide them with the skills to succeed," he said.

Nodada said the education minister was continuously failing to provide quality education in the country, subjecting them to a lifetime of poverty, unemployment, and hunger.

He said instead of focusing on improving the quality of education by addressing the systemic failures plaguing basic education — overcrowding, poor quality teaching, unsafe infrastructure and drop-outs — Motshekga and her "ANC colleagues" bulldozed the damaging Basic Education Laws Amendment (Bela) Bill through Parliament.

"This draconian bill will disempower school governing bodies (SGBs), parents, and communities from making decisions about their children’s education," he said.

Nodada said the DA and civil society organisations will launch legal action against the Bela Bill, adding that they will also continue to call on President Cyril Ramaphosa to fire Motshekga.

The following are reasons given by Nodada that Motshekga must be fired:

Learners' lack of foundational numeracy and literacy skills

The Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) revealed that 81% of Grade 4 learners cannot read for meaning in any language, and 56% of Grade 6 learners cannot read for meaning when tested on Grade 4 levels.

According to results from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), only 37% of Grade 5s and 41% of Grade 9s have the required numeracy skills, while only 28% of Grade 5 learners and 36% of Grade 9 learners have acquired the basic subject knowledge and skills in science.

Poor quality teaching

The SACMEQ IV report revealed that only 27.8% of teachers could read analytically, while only 64% had critical reading skills at a Grade 6 level. Only 32.4% of teachers had concrete problem-solving skills when tested at a Grade 6 level, and only 35.4% had abstract problem-solving skills. In 2022, a total of 1,575 unqualified and under-qualified teachers were employed by the Department of Basic Education (DBE).

Severe infrastructure failures

Learners are forced to attend schools where classrooms are overcrowded. A total of 471 schools still do not have proper sanitation facilities, and 5,201 schools still have pit toilets.

Learners are forced to attend schools in facilities built with mud and asbestos; some buildings are so unsafe that learners are taught under trees. A further 69.9% of schools do not have libraries, 80.7% have no laboratories, 58.16% are without computer facilities, and 35% have no access to sports facilities.

Every deadline to eradicate pit toilets and address infrastructure problems through the ASIDI and SAFE programmes has been missed.

High drop-out rates and the real matric pass rates

The DA calculates the real matric pass rate by bringing into account the number of learners that dropped out at the end of Grade 9 and never made it to matric. The drop-out rate for the 2022 matric class was 31.8% (337,364 learners), with a real matric pass rate of only 54.6%.

Almost R1 billion in irregular, fruitless, and wasteful expenditure

The 2022/23 annual report revealed R954,943,000 in irregular expenditure and R20,415, 000 in fruitless and wasteful expenditure.

Nodada said South Africa needed a competent minister of basic education that cared about the future of our children and empowered them with the necessary skills and knowledge to have prosperous, successful lives.

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