South Africa: Media Statement - Chairperson of Basic Education Committee Expresses Concern Over Matric Maths Paper Leak

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The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education has expressed grave concern regarding allegations that the Grade 12 Mathematics Paper 2 was leaked in two provinces.

Committee Chairperson, Ms Bongiwe Mbinqo-Gigaba, said she noted reports that learners in Gauteng and Limpopo allegedly had access to the mathematics question paper hours before it was to be written today. "This is extremely concerning for fair and credible examinations. These allegations levelled at some learners in those provinces now place all learners who wrote Mathematics Paper 2 today in Gauteng and Limpopo under pressure as the extent of the leakage is being investigated by the Department of Basic Education," said Ms Mbinqo-Gigaba.

"This year, with the disruptions to the academic year due to the outbreak of Covid-19, has already been stressful to the Class of 2020. This will clearly add more stress and it is still early in the examinations."

Ms Mbinqo-Gigaba appealed to learners in South Africa at large not to resort to acts of criminality as that will impact on their future. "Buying or selling a Grade 12 examination paper before it is written is a criminal offence. Both the seller and the buyer are committing a crime. I appeal to all our learners to act honourably and to put in the effort without resorting to cheating."

The Department of Basic Education (DBE) announced today that it was investigating allegations that the Mathematics Paper 2 was leaked. The DBE said the origins of the leak are not clear as yet but the candidates who had access to the question paper are located in Limpopo and Gauteng provinces. According to the DBE, the initial indications are that the paper became available in the early hours of the morning. The department has enlisted the help of law enforcement authorities to investigate the matter to establish the extent of the leak.

The allegations of the leak come a few days after the department announced that an undisclosed number of matric pupils in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal were caught with crib notes during an examination last week. The DBE said the department was dealing with the incident and strengthening vigilance in examination centres to protect the integrity of the exam process.

Ms Mbinqo-Gigaba said the committee will ask the DBE to brief it on these matters during its next engagement.

More From: Parliament of South Africa

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