R200 million Mkhondo Boarding School in Piet Retief abandoned
Premier must act before abandoned R200 million school project is completely wasted
by Jane Sithole MPL – DA Spokesperson on Education
The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Mpumalanga has written to Premier Refilwe Mtsweni-Tsipane to urgently intervene and save the half-completed and abandoned R200 million Mkhondo Boarding School in Piet Retief before it is totally vandalised beyond repair.
During a recent oversight of the building site, the DA was shocked to see the shoddy workmanship and that this project has been abandoned by the contractor. Roof trusses have been left uncovered and bags of cement are left lying in the open.
It was also clear that the contractor used in this project was mediocre as the gradient of the ground was not built at the right angle, evident from accumulating water dams when it rains, in turn causing more damage to the buildings.
The DA also noticed that all doors have now been stolen from the site. If nothing is done to put a stop to the vandalism, this could be another abandoned project by the government.
Initially, Mkhondo Boarding School was planned to assist with the challenges experienced by learners and teachers from small farms and multigrade schools in the Mkhondo area. This particular boarding school was to be completed in 2019, the MEC for Education, Bonakele Majuba, stated at the time. However, in March of 2021, only around 75% of construction was finished with noticeable delays experienced on site because of funding challenges.
It appears that the Mkhondo Boarding School project was suspended around August 2021, and to date, no new contractor has been appointed – and no new completion date announced.
Mpumalanga learners desperately need new schools and government cannot allow this project to be ruined to such a point that it will not be feasible to complete it. The Premier must urgently intervene and appoint a new contractor to finish up the project before it is completely vandalised and ruined.
Jane Sithole MPL
DA Spokesperson on Education
082 854 9711
060 971 4297
067 903 8425