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Pupils miss class due to quake damage

2014-08-06 12:14

VIDEO: At least 400 houses damaged in SA quake

Orkney - Vuyani-Mawethu Secondary School pupils in the township of Khuma near Orkney in the North West were milling around the schoolyard on Wednesday morning as teachers tried to find a way to deal with damaged classrooms.

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At least four classrooms were damaged on Tuesday when an earthquake measuring 5.5 on the Richter scale hit the province. The computer lab suffered the most damage with ceiling boards and bricks having fallen to the ground.

Some pupils were inside when the earthquake hit.

The Grade 10 and Grade 12 pupils were told to go home because their classrooms were too badly damaged to continue working on Wednesday.

Damage

Dr Kenneth Kaunda municipality district director Hasimbhay Motara said some schools were severely damaged.

Besides Vuyani-Mawethu Secondary School, Borankanelo Secondary School was also damaged.

He said nobody was hurt.

"We are currently doing an assessment of the computer lab and the computers and then a way forward will be found," Motara said.

Pupils played soccer while officials conducted their inspections.

The quake was also felt in large parts of the country and neighbouring states, such as Botswana and Mozambique.

The quake left a trail of damage in the North West province with the Matlosana local municipality being the hardest hit.

Houses damaged

About 400 houses were reportedly damaged in the township of Khuma and one person was killed.

Residents were on Wednesday morning still taking stock of the damage to houses.

Mamosa Melato, a woman whose house was destroyed, told Sapa the family slept in the RDP house behind the badly damaged structure, despite the provincial government pledging to assist residents.

"We slept in the RDP house. Officials just came and took samples of soil and bricks, and they said they would return today [Wednesday]," she said.

The premier's office announced on Tuesday that 26 families from Khuma in Stilfontein, east of Klerksdorp in the Dr Kenneth Kaunda district municipality, whose households were badly damaged by the quake were receiving assistance in the form of temporary accommodation, food, and related basic needs.

Another resident Malehlohonolo Mosai, said her family was not visited by any member of the provincial government except for surveyors accompanied by Sapa.

"The only people who came to the house were those that evaluated the house and told us not to sleep in the house as it was not safe," she said.

Mosai said they could not cook and had to go to bed hungry as they could not enter their two bedroom house.

"We slept hungry and even today the children went to school without bathing and eating," said Mosai.

She appealed to government to help rebuild her house as she was unemployed and relied on state grants.

North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo and Matlosana mayor Mike Khauoe visited the area on Wednesday.

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