Report suggests minister can’t meet targetsDate Released: Tue, 25 June 2013 07:59 +0200
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga is unlikely to meet her target to build more than 300 Eastern Cape schools by the end of the next financial year, according to a report released by Public Service Accountability Monitor (PSAM).
This despite Motshekga announcing last month in Parliament that a budget of R1.956-billion in 2013-14 would go to the Schools Backlog Grant, also called Accelerated Schools Infrastructure Delivery Initiative (Asidi).
Asidi is a government project designed to eradicate mud, inappropriate and unsafe schools across the country.
Eastern Cape is a leading beneficiary having the majority of such schools.
At the time Motshekga said a further R3.170-billion for 2014-15 and R2.912-billion for 2015-16 had been allocated for the project.
The minister said only 132 schools were scheduled to be built in the Eastern Cape out of 200 across the country this financial year.
However, the Rhodes University-based lobby group in a scathing report last week said continued budget expenditure patterns and failure showed that the department was not meeting targets.
PSAM education researcher Zukiswa Kota said Motshekga had failed to eradicate mud schools and unsafe classrooms through the Asidi.
“The national department has fallen behind in its 2011-12 target to deliver 49 new schools by 31 March 2012 and 50 new schools by 31 March 2013 with the result that the target of 346 new schools by the end of 2014 appears unlikely to be achieved,” she said.
Kota said although Motshekga, her second-in-command, director-general Bobby Soobrayan, the Eastern Cape premier Noxolo Kiviet as well as MEC Mandla Makupula, had given several reasons for the delay and that the project had been extended for another five years, there were still questions still not answered. These included:
Monies spent on projects thus far;
Number of schools successfully completed and used for teaching and learning;
Steps taken to replace administrators who left Asidi;
Steps taken to streamline project implementations; and
Detailed reasons for the rescheduling of Asidi projects and the financial implications.
No responses were received to questions sent to the national and provincial education departments by yesterday.
Source: Daily Dispatch