Mkhatshwa’s death a blow to Mpumalanga

Ce­fups Academy loses a prin­ci­pal, teacher, fa­ther

Sowetan - - Obituaries - By Mandla Khoza

Born: April 16 1956 Died: Septem­ber 12 2017 Fu­neral: To­mor­row at Mkhatshwa fam­ily res­i­dence from 7.30am

Burial: Ch­weni Trust near White River Si­mon Mkhatshwa, the Mpumalanga prin­ci­pal whose pupils af­fec­tion­ately called “pres­i­dent”, will be buried in Nel­spruit to­mor­row.

Mkhatshwa will be buried at the fam­ily res­i­dence in Ch­weni Trust near White River. He died in the early hours of Tues­day at the Nelp­sruit Medi-Clinic.

Mkhatshwa was the di­rec­tor and owner of Ce­fups Academy, which earned in­famy for ad­min­is­ter­ing the much-ma­ligned cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment.

In 2014, a Grade 12 pupil from the school died af­ter she was al­legedly beaten by a teacher for fail­ing a test but Mkhath­swa dis­missed the claims.

His pupils called him “pres­i­dent” by virtue of him be­ing the owner of the school and also to dif­fer­en­ti­ate him from the other teach­ers.

De­spite be­ing no­to­ri­ous for its ap­pli­ca­tion of cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment, the academy was fa­mous for achiev­ing a 100% pass rates for may years run­ning.

For­mer stu­dent at the academy, Kh­wezi Ng­wenya, who is now a teacher in Pre­to­ria, said Mkhatshwa’s death was a “blow to ed­u­ca­tion in Mpumalanga”.

“He was a hard-work­ing man whose pri­or­ity was to en­sure that we got a good ed­u­ca­tion at the school.

“I learnt a lot from him. He guided me to be what I am in life to­day.

“I’m sad­dened by his death and may his soul rest in piece,” Ng­wenya said.

Mpumalanga provin­cial de­part­ment of ed­u­ca­tion spokesman, Jasper Zwane, said the de­part­ment was shocked by Mkhatshwa’s death.

“We have send our deep­est con­do­lences to the Mkhatshwa fam­ily, teach­ers and pupils.

“We can not talk much about the is­sues we had with the school [in terms of cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment] be­cause that is in the past and the mat­ter was fi­nalised,” said Zwane.

Ce­fups Academy wrote on their Face­book page: “We are sad­dened by the pass­ing of a fa­ther, a col­league, a friend, a man of in­tegrity and a great leader …

“As we pay our trib­utes to you Zwide kaLanga, your teach­ings and good deeds you in­stilled in us will al­ways re­main. Kuy­ohamba Maqhawe Kusale Ti­bongo … May Your Soul Rest in Per­fect Peace Dr SNL Mkhatshwa.”

Ce­fus Academy prin­ci­pal Si­mon Mkhatshwa died af­ter a short ill­ness at the Nel­spruit Medi-Clinic.

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