The North West Department of Education received with shock and total disgust, the news of the bullying of learner Lufuno Mavhunga who later took her own life.

On behalf of the North West Department of Education and the entire schooling community, we wish to convey our deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of Lufuno Mavhunga, the Limpopo Department of Education, MEC Polly Boshielo, your schools and the people of Limpopo Province.

The MEC for Education in the North West, Ms. Mmaphefo Matsemela is deeply touched and troubled by the bullying incident which led to the unfortunate demise of a brilliant young mind, Lufuno Mavhunga, who still had her whole life ahead of her.

MEC Matsemela strongly condemns incidents of violence and bullying, with the emphasis that bullying does not have a place in schools of the North West Province.

The MEC has called on all learners who are suffering in silence to speak out.

“I want to encourage all learners who silently experience bullying in any of our schools and feel afraid to speak out, to come forward and report the bullying. The death of Lufuno Mavhunga should not be in vain. We all should accept the challenge her untimely death poses on us. It is time that we face this monster head-on. We all should agree that we need to strengthen family values to ensure that educators are assisted to strengthen ethical behaviour from home,” says MEC Matsemela.

The MEC wants to take this time to assure learners and parents that the Department will strengthen the Quality Learning and Teaching Campaign (the school community-based) structures and prioritise anti-bullying campaigns in all our schools.

“We will strengthen parental participation in our schools more than ever before. Going forward, our department will prioritise anti–bullying campaigns in order to tackle this monstrous enemy. Bullying is a cancer that continues to eat away the moral fibre of our children in schools. The Department will work very hard to eradicate bullying at the source, whenever it tries to rear its ugly head,” says MEC Matsemela.

The MEC has also called on parents in the province to communicate regularly with their children, as this may assist with detecting early warning signs of possible future danger.

“Parents need to communicate with their children on a daily basis in order to identify challenges on time. Learners should be capacitated to be bold enough to speak out whenever they are being abused in any way. We should be able to empower our learners to fight even elements of Gender Based Violence when they grow up. It has to stop here! It has to stop right now!” says MEC Matsemela.

MEC Matsemela once more wishes to convey sincere condolences and hopes that the family of Lufuno, the learners of Mbilwi Secondary School and the citizens of Limpopo, may find solace and strength in the Creator, knowing that He will ease all the pain resulting from this unfortunate tragedy.

End.

Issued by the Media Liaison Unit.
For more information, please contact:
Elias Malindi
Departmental Spokesperson
Cell: 072 1154 855/ 072 892 839

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