Thursday, March 10, 2011


Parents of children at a Swaziland Primary School are threatening to call the police the next time their children are beaten.

Two children at Malamlela were so badly beaten by a teacher that one was left with a broken arm and another was so severely thrashed on the buttocks and they could not sit nor sleep for days.

Parents at the school claim that the teacher who inflicted the wounds is a drunk and unfit to teach their children.

The Weekend Observer newspaper reported that the two children were beaten because they became tired during a sports training session.

A parent of the child who was beaten told the newspaper, the ‘buttocks were swollen and filled with blood clots’.

One parent said, ‘Next time he punishes our children like that, we will not hesitate to call the police and lay a charge of assault and also call SWAGAA (Swaziland Action Group Against Abuse) to report the abuse.’

Parents complained to Wilson Ntshangase, Minister of Education and Training, who said it was up to the school principal to deal with the teacher.

That was a wholly inadequate response. Excessively brutal corporal punishment is taking place in schools all over Swaziland. Recent reports included one about an innocent child blinded for life by a punishment cane. Another was about a boy who collapsed unconscious and had to be rushed to the clinic after a beating for something he hadn’t even done.

This is a matter for government policy. Corporal punishment of children should be made illegal (in schools and in the home). There is no justification for subjecting children to brutalities at the hands of teachers, who are clearly incapable of handling children.

What is so unique about Swazi children that they can’t be educated without violence? In neighbouring South Africa, children are protected against corporal punishment under the country’s constitution.

Corporal punishment has been banned in schools in most developed countries all over the world.

Sycophants surrounding King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch, are always bleating about how Swaziland is moving closer to the king’s dream of becoming a First World country. If that were even remotely true, the kingdom would put in place a law to protect its children.

How can it be that a child can’t go to school without the fear of being blinded, or having their arm broken by a teacher who is supposed to be there to teach them?

See also



No comments: