The Department of Basic Education (DBE), in collaboration with Provincial Education Departments (PEDs), have made significant strides in addressing school infrastructure challenges. The Department, led by Basic Education Deputy Minister, Mr Enver Surty, briefed the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education on the progress made towards delivering school infrastructure in Parliament, Cape Town, on 06 March 2018.
Deputy Minister Surty informed the Portfolio Committee that the bulk of the work was taking place in provinces and that the DBE mainly played an oversight role, except for the Accelerated Schools Infrastructure Delivery Initiative (ASIDI), which it manages directly. The Deputy Minister added that the situation was far from being fully addressed but that, based on the number of schools completed and those under construction, there was hope on the horizon. The Department needed the co-operation of other organs of state and government departments to succeed in the provision of school infrastructure.
Director-General of the DBE, Mr Hubert Mathanzima Mweli, informed the Committee that the expenditure on school infrastructure indicated that, by January 2018, KwaZulu-Natal had already spent 93% of their infrastructure budget from the equitable share. Mr Mweli reported that storms had damaged 324 schools in the Province in 2017, and that it placed a huge financial burden on the Province as mobile classrooms and other facilities had to be provided to ensure learners were not negatively affected.
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