Gauteng MEC for Education: Mr Panyaza Lesufi
Ladies and Gentlemen
Thank you, Programme Director, for the opportunity to participate in the 2020 National Senior Certificate (NSC) Examinations Pledge Signing Ceremony.
Despite the hiatus occasioned by the COVID-19, as a country, we are ready to host one of the largest matric examinations since the advent of democracy in 1994.
In one word. ‘It’s all systems go.’
The only threat that remains with us is the COVID-19 pandemic and the unreliability of the electricity grid.
Nonetheless, all state organs are ready to assist in ensuring the smooth running of the 2020 National Senior Certificate (NSC) Examinations.
To prepare against the ever-present threat posed by violent protests, the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster is providing all the necessary support and, the law enforcement agencies are ready for any eventuality.
As the Basic Education Minister, I extend my warm wishes to all matriculants sitting for the historic 2020 Matric Exams.
To the nation, I say, we are combat-ready in the service of our country.
The NSC Examinations are the largest and very complex system that is delivered by our Government year-on-year without any security glitches, system failures and cheating.
What is most heartening about our agile exit examination process is that by design, it is insulated from corruption and general malfeasance.
Today, we urge the Class of 2020 to sign a pledge to commit for the continued corruption-free Matric Examination.
The pledge is an attempt to adopt a more proactive rather than a reactive approach to the elimination of examination related irregularities.
We desire to instil a sense of pride in the examination process. Thus we urge learners and teachers to publicly demonstrate their commitment to comply with the examination’s code of conduct.
For the Class of 2020, we have decided to focus on advocacy as a means to combat any examination related irregularities.
In the same vein, all candidates are warned not to bring into the examination centres any electronic devices such as cell-phones, unauthorised material (crib notes) and other related examination dishonest misdemeanours.
Failure to adhere to these simple rules means any candidate found guilty will face the consequence management measures including being disbarred from writing the examination for a minimum of one, and a maximum of three subsequent examinations.
The harshness of sentencing is to demonstrate the value of being ethical, reward those who are honest by ensuring that they pass through an irregularity free examination, and punishing the one’s spoiling it for everyone.
By administering an irregularity free examination, of high integrity, we build a strong nation founded on sound and ethical values.
In the end, the examination pledge also serves as a reminder about the COVID-19 rules and regulations which must be adhered to all times. However, there is a detailed, but separate COVID-19 Examinations Protocol which outlines measures to combat and limit the spreading of the virus during the writing of the 2020 matric examination.
Programme Director; it is gratifying to note that in the last six years, we had only one regrettable but localised incident of cheating that we nipped in the bud. Interestingly, it was our heightened sense of duty and agile security systems that picked up this problem very early.
Today, I pay tribute to thousands of our teachers who are part of this remarkable Government’s designed NSC examinations ecosystem.
Over the years, all our teachers and officials have always covered themselves in glory. As a country, we appreciate your exploits. We are proud of you all.
As you can appreciate, the NSC Examinations are high stakes national assessments; hence we can’t leave anything to chance.
I wish the Matric Class of 2020, all the best.
I thank you.