PORT ELIZABETH – Safety within the school environment is a collective responsibility and whenever reports are received that may threaten or inhibit the safety of learners, immediate action must be taken.
On Monday, 16 November 2020, at about 12:00 members of SAPS Bethelsdorp Reaction Task Team immediately responded to information received of a learner possibly in possession of a firearm. On arrival at the school in Bethelsdorp, members were ushered to the suspected classroom. While police were explaining the nature of their visit to the learners, an 18-year-old, Grade 11 learner approached a police official and indicated that he has something in his bag. The learner was removed from the classroom with his school bag. Upon searching the bag in his presence, a .38 revolver was found with one round of ammunition. The serial number of the firearm was filed off.
He was arrested for prohibited possession of a firearm and illegal possession of ammunition. He is expected to appear in court soon.
Acting Mount Road Cluster Commander, Brigadier Thandiswe Kupiso commended the members for their swift response as well as the arrest and subsequent confiscation.’ Violence in or near schools impacts negatively on education of learners and the protection of our learners is of paramount importance. We appreciate the information and appeal to the community to never hesitate to contact the police with any information, no matter how trivial it may seem. Your call may save a life. The National School Safety Framework encompasses various role-players including the SAPS to ensure the creation of a safe, violence and threat free learning environment for learners and educators,’ added Brigadier Kupiso.