Modise slams illegal initiation schools for 'undermining our tradition'


Following the deaths of two teenage initiates, North West Premier Thandi Modise has demanded the closure of illegally run initiation schools.

North West Premier Thandi Modise. (Gallo)

North West Premier Thandi Modise on Sunday called for a clamp down on illegal initiation schools following the death of two initiates.

According to police, a 16-year-old started vomiting after drinking water at the school on Friday. He then collapsed and died, said Colonel Emelda Setlhako. On Saturday, another initiate (17) at the same school in Makwaneng, Amalia, complained of stomach cramps after eating a meal. He also died. The other initiates at the school were taken to hospital.

Modise's spokesperson Lesiba Kgwele said while it was unclear whether the school was run illegally, certain factors suggested that it was.

"Accredited initiation schools have inspections which are done with the department of health so there would no be danger of in the water and food of initiates," said Kgwele.

Modise called for action against those who ran initiation schools illegally.

"Chancers and those who commit atrocities at initiation schools undermine our tradition and culture and should be brought to book," she said in a statement. "We call on traditional leaders as custodians of our tradition and culture to monitor initiation schools within their areas of jurisdiction and report ill-treatment and illegal operations to authorities."

Setlhako said police were investigating the deaths, while no arrests were made yet. – Sapa

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