Condoms not part of school stationery pack, says Lesufi

By Andrea Chothia for The South African

MEC for Education, Panyaza Lesufi says the Department of Basic Education making condoms part of stationary in 2020, is fake news.

MEC for Education, Panyaza Lesufi said on Twitter yesterday, 13 November 2019 that the image circulating on social media, stating that the Department of Basic Education will make condoms part of learner’s stationary in 2020, is fake news.

An image of a newspaper clipping, stating that the Department of Basic Education will make condoms part of learner’s stationary in 2020 has been circulating on social media.

The image contains the Departments logo and the date and time that it was released with a Facebook like option beside it. It looked as though it was screengrabbed from Facebook and placed in a newspaper. The date and time below it read: “1 Nov at 2:51PM.”

The post that was made to look like it came directly from the Department of Basic Education read: “Due to high rate of teenage pregnancy, condoms will be part of stationary in 2020.”

Lesfui posted the image and captioned it: “Fake News, kindly ignore @EducationGP, @Steve_Mabona.”

A conversation then took place where multiple Twitter users discussed the possibilities with Lesufi.

One user said: “Condoms at schools is a good idea.” Lesufi replied saying that knowledge is power. Another user said she disagrees, as it’s just a free license to fornication.

Another user asked: “What paper is this or is it photoshop?” Lesufi replied and said he suspects it is Photoshop.

Reuben Radcliffe on Twitter said: “Problem is: Our government has done such a ridiculously poor job with education that one is no longer surprised! Just about any bad news about education seems credible! Such a shame.” Lesufi did not respond.

School placements for learners
The conversation about the image being fake news quickly faded and turned to parents questioning Lesufi about the placements of their children at certain schools.

One user said: “you came on the radio and explained the criteria for placement starting with distance, and now you place my child 17km and my other two kids are at school 3.5 km from my house, how can that be?”

Lesufi graciously responded saying: “Remember there’s a huge demand for certain schools. Kindly fill the appeal form and the team will surely look at it but it will be difficult to remove someone’s child. Let’s hear the appeal.”

Another user said: “MEC, I have not received a placement for my daughter. I have signed and submitted the objection form to the school. When can I expect the outcome?” Lesufi did not respond.

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