DA leader expected to announce legal action over school pit latrines

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The Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen is expected to announce legal action over school pit latrines.

This follows the death of a three-year-old Langalam Viki at a school toilet in Buffelsdoring in the Eastern Cape.

The Provincial Education Department has come under fire for its failure to eradicate pit latrines at most rural schools.

Steenhuisen will be visiting the Viki family, and will also be conducting a site visit to the school today on Human Rights Day.

Funeral of three-year-old Langalam Viki, whose body was found in a pit latrine underway:

Meanwhile, Amnesty International says there is a lack of political will to eradicate pit toilets in schools.

Campaigner at Amnesty International South Africa, Sibusiso Khasa says, “We have nearly 3 000 public schools that still have basic pit toilets. Because even now, if you look at the fact that the Department of Basic Education last year proposed regulations that they are trying to remove the deadlines in terms of the minimum norms and standards. So, that shows you that there is a lack of political will.”

“Also, if you look at the history of how the department has been sort of spending money in terms of school infrastructure, you find that there has also been underspending in some cases,” adds Khasa.

Spotlight on eradication of pit toilets in public schools: Equal Education’s Itumeleng Mothlabane: