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South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has recently condemned the violence that has erupted outside Brackenfell High School in Johannesburg. The violence first erupted yesterday after members of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) peacefully protested outside the school with regards to a private Matric farewell dance that recently took place and was reportedly a “whites only” event. The incident has divided South Africans. Some have sided with the actions of the parents who they feel are currently trying to protect their children’s right to an education during a particularly stressful time. Others have defended the EFF and what they feel is admittedly a greater issue at play—continued racism in the country.


READ: South African School Under Fire For Racist Classroom Activity

President Ramaphosa released a statement which reads as follows:

“At this most important and difficult time for matriculants not only at Brackenfell High School but around the country, the spectacle of parents and protestors coming to blows at the school gate is deeply unfortunate. It is the right of every South African to engage in peaceful protest, and any actions to suppress the right to freedom of expression, particularly through violence and intimidation, must be roundly condemned. What happened today brings back hurtful memories of a past we should never seek to return to.”

The Western Cape Education MEC, Debbie Schäfer, has also condemned the violence. Schäfer has, however, instead that the event was a private one of which the school itself was unaware. She also goes on to add that while diversity remains integral to the schooling system, the EFF should not have staged a protest outside the school. Schäfer has come under fire for expressing these v news on social media. Watch her interview with eNCA below:


MEC condemns violent clashes

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Naturally, social media has ben alive with debate over the incident. Issues to do with how the media continues to cover the incident as a “clash” and not as an “attack on peaceful protesters” has been at the fore. It has also not helped tremendously that the main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), has tweeted about the violence and likened the protesting EFF members to Nazis “in brown shirts”.

Read further responses by South Africans on social media below:

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