Police shut down protest at Brackenfell High School

Police used stun grenades to disperse the crowd. Picture Henk Kruger/African News Agency(ANA)(ANATOPIX)

Police used stun grenades to disperse a crowd of Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) protesters outside Brackenfell High School today, Wednesday November 18.

This comes just a day after the school had to reschedule Friday’s exams for Grades-8-to-11 pupils due to a planned anti-racism protest by the EFF.

PAC members started the protest at the corner of Frans Conradie Drive and Paradys Road and forced their way onto the school grounds, but riot police stopped them in their tracks.

“The area became volatile and the crowd was dispersed,” said provincial police spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut.

No arrests had been made and the situation was still being monitored, he said.

Education MEC Debbie Schäfer said the City of Cape Town had granted the EFF a permit for 100 of its members to protest outside the school on Friday November 20, starting at 10am.

The school would remain open and proceed with classes on Friday, she said, adding that arrangements were being made for the school’s matrics to write Physical Sciences Paper 1 at the school.

Ms Schäfer urged residents and parents to avoid getting into rows with protesters, and she urged protesters to conduct themselves peacefully, comply with Covid-19 rules of social distancing and wearing masks, and stay off the school grounds.

“Please do not take the law into your own hands,” she said.

Police, law enforcement and private security companies in Brackenfell had been asked to monitor the protest at the school on Friday, to protect teachers and pupils, said Ms Schäfer.

The latest confrontation at the school comes after EFF protesters and residents clashed on November 10, following a private matric event where only white pupils and two teachers were present.

EFF provincial chairman Meliahaya Xego this week told Northern News that he would be leading the protest on Friday, to “finish what they started”.

The protest would confront racism at the school, he said.

“We are here to protect our children and get to the bottom of racism and discrimination happening at the school. We will take on every school in the province that shows racism,” he said.

The police stopped PAC marchers at the intersection of Frans Conradie Drive and Paradys Road. Picture Henk Kruger/African News Agency(ANA)