THE release of the highly anticipated “jobs for cash” report has been postponed again.
The Department of Basic Education announced that the report, which was scheduled to be released on Friday, would be delayed for two weeks after stakeholders requested more time to “refine their inputs and responses to the report”.
This is the second postponement in as many months. Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga last month decided to delay the release of the report to allow teacher unions and other stakeholders implicated in the matter more time to respond.
In a statement on Friday the Department of Basic Education said that Ms Motshekga had held bilateral meetings with the National Teachers Union, the National Professional Teachers Association, and the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) this week. The minister also engaged with the Suid-Afrikaanse Onderwys Unie and the Professional Educators Union.
“Emanating from these consultation meetings with the minister, stakeholders have requested more time to refine their inputs and responses to the report. The ministerial task team with the support of the minister agreed to give stakeholders the opportunity as requested and therefore the release of the report will be postponed for two weeks to allow for these processes to be concluded.
“Stakeholders’ responses and inputs will be considered by the (task team) and before the final report is published,” the department said.
The task team was set up after reports alleging Sadtu members were selling principal and deputy principal posts for R30,000 or more at schools in the Eastern Cape‚ KwaZulu-Natal‚ Limpopo‚ Gauteng‚ Mpumalanga and the North West. Sadtu denied the allegations and undertook to co-operate with investigations.
Last month Sadtu threatened to reject the report, saying the union had not been given an opportunity to comment on the interim report before it was made public in December.
Democratic Alliance (DA) MP and basic education spokesman Gavin Davis said on Friday that Ms Motshekga’s failure to release the report in the face of Sadtu pressure was “inexcusable”.
“Her failure to release the ‘jobs for cash’ report has nothing to do with matters of process, and everything to do with pressure from Sadtu. Yesterday (Thursday), Sadtu issued a threatening statement urging Minister Motshekga not to follow through with the release of the report. Today, Minister Motshekga meekly complied with Sadtu’s wishes,” said Mr Davis.
He said the failure to release the report showed that it was clearly Sadtu, not Ms Motshekga, who called the shots in SA’s education system.
“If it ever sees the light of day, the ‘jobs for cash’ report will show that six out of nine provincial education departments have been captured by Sadtu. Minister Motshekga’s failure to release the report today suggests that she has been captured as well,” said Mr Davis.