The Inkatha Freedom Party calls on the Competition Commission to ensure that its investigation into South African school uniform monopolies that take advantage of parents buying uniforms for their children is also extended to KwaZulu-Natal.
“Also here in KwaZulu-Natal the school uniform prices are high and in some places parents are forced to buy school uniform from certain stores and not whether they choose too. We believe that this investigation must be extended because everyone must be able to afford school uniform including those who are poor,” said IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson on Education, Mrs Thembeni Madlopha-Mthethwa MPL.
“Many people depend on social grants but when you consider school uniform prices, they are more than the social grants that people receive. This results in too many children going to school without shoes because their parents can only managed to buy a few items for them. It also results in many children not going to school because they do not have school uniforms. The Commission must find out who owns these stores that sell the clothes, especially at those schools where people are forced to buy the uniform from specified stores. This has a negative impact on people leaving in rural areas because they are forced to travel long distances to buy school uniforms in towns and cities where most of the school uniform is available. School uniforms must be available in stores closer to where people live,” continued Mrs Madlopha-Mthethwa.
“We further call on the KZN MEC of Education, Mthandeni Dlungwane to support this investigation by the Competition Commission. He must be vocal on this matter and ensure that no school child will be excluded from schooling just because they don’t have the proper school uniform. Every child has a right to education so therefore it doesn’t make sense to chase them away if they don’t have proper school uniform without knowing the real causes and the circumstances which resulted in that,” concluded Mrs Madlopha-Mthethwa.
The IFP calls upon the Competition Commission to ensure that anyone found to be guilty in this matter must be punished and parents must be allowed to buy school uniforms at any shop not to certain stores only.
Mrs Thembeni Madlopha-Mthethwa MPL
IFP KZN Education Spokesperson
079 114 3015/ 071 884 3844