Provincial Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi on Saturday said Esithebeni Primary School in Soweto was broken into on Friday night and over R3 million worth of equipment was stolen.
These include office computers, computer lab equipment and learner’s smart boards.
Lesufi, who visited the school, said his government was devastated at the theft: “…And for someone to come in and do these things in our primary schools breaks our heart. We are honestly emotionally drained and devasted, it’s a huge investment. But we are here with the police and community leaders and are convening a community meeting. The community must tell us who did this. It can’t be business as usual when a school is broken into.”
Lesufi said this crime occurred at a crucial time, as learners are preparing for exams.
Two months ago, the Education MEC said that school vandalism and theft have cost the department more than R120 million just this year alone.
The department said that out of the 256 schools in Gauteng, 262 criminal cases had been registered since January.
A number of school break-ins were reported in several parts of the country this year.
Most of the losses were incurred on the East Rand where thieves targeted more than 50 schools.
Police are investigating the matter.