Following a gang fight that broke out last week at Folweni High School premises last week and resulted in the fatal stabbing of a grade 9 pupil by a pupil belonging to another gang; KwaZulu-Natal’s education MEC has given pupils who belong to gangs at a school south of Durban an ultimatum: “Fetch your parents and change your ways or face expulsion.”

Kwazi Mshengu said this when he paid a visit to the school on Monday morning.

He said “Pupils have categorised themselves into different groups of gangsters. The situation has¬† became unstable at the school,” said Mshengu.¬†Recently a pupil was killed by another pupil, and some pupils are unable to attend school because they belong different gangs and threaten each other with attacks. It is quite a volatile situation.”

His visit proved fruitful as pupils belonging to gangs identified themselves and were immediately sent home to fetch their parents.

Mshengu further said “Today we met pupils who clearly identified which gang they belong to. We decided they should immediately leave the school and return with their parents because we also want an agreement from parents that if their children do anything against the school’s code of conduct, the school will not hesitate to expel them,”.

The MEC said his visit will also reinforce the work of the school governing body, school management team and other structures of society, and draw “a red line” against thuggery at schools.

He said “Our schools will not be for people who have decided schools are not spaces to acquire education but rather to advance the thuggery of gangs. We do not want a situation in which the majority of pupils attend with fear and where teachers and innocent pupils are no longer safe”.

Mshengu added that “We need to remove the rotten potatoes if they do not repent, and make sure the school is stable and the environment is conducive for teaching and learning.”