Stabbing highlights schools crisis

Staff Writer | Jun 11, 2019
Parents at Forest High School in Johannesburg South reportedly threatened to shut down the school if the pupil accused of stabbing three fellow pupils, killing one, was allowed back to complete his exams.

Nineteen-year-old Mohamed Mwela, accused of stabbing three pupils last Monday, killing one of them, was granted bail of R5 000 by the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court yesterday. 

The incident prompted parents to insist that, even if he was granted bail, he should not be allowed back.

In the fatal incident last week, Daniel Bakwela, 16, died after an alleged stabbing in which two other pupils were injured.

Yesterday, Magistrate Basimane Molwana ordered that Mwela be kept away from the school and other witnesses. Molwana also ordered the Gauteng Department of Education to make alternative arrangements for him to complete his exams, and to consider moving him to a different school.

News reports suggest Forest High School has a history of criminal incidents, including rape, drug dealing and gang violence.

Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu recommended a ‘tough’ approach to gang violence and bad behaviour at troubled schools, according to EWN.

‘We need to be tough in ensuring that when you’ve got laws and regulations… those laws must bite. There are schools known for gang violence and bad behaviour; we know those schools,’ Zulu reportedly said.

The IRR has argued that giving parents greater say in running South Africa’s public schools is critical to reversing widespread dysfunction in school-level education. 


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