By Nelisiwe Magwaza
Matric students, who have been living in halls since the floods that killed hundreds of people and destroyed thousands of homes in KwaZulu Natal in April, have lamented not being able to study because of their living conditions.
Nomvula Nzama (17), Abongile Nxeba (17) and Anitha Mthethwa (18) are Grade 12 learners who stay at V Hall in Umlazi V Section said there are many issues that now affect their ability to study.
“I have so many challenges. I can't study any time. I don't have privacy for my studies. I have limited time to study. At nine 'o clock I have to be switch off light if it’s early afternoons my younger brothers and sisters they have so much noise. I even go outside to continue studying, but I am scared,” said Nzama.
Grade 12 learners across the country are currently preparing for their midterm exams. Another matric student who says in the hall, Sizakele Mbatha said she is facing a similar situation, and it is causing her depression.
“I am so depressed. After school, I have to stay behind and study because on our side at night it's too cold and there are no light allowed after nine in the evening.”
fray.news visited Enaleni Secondary School in Umlazi, where there are 28 children who live in halls, seven of whom are doing grade 12.
“Here at Enaleni, we have children who are affected by floods and some of them they don't have even parents. They are taken care of by an older sister or relative. What I see is that they have been through a lot and I don’t see any sign that they can forget,” said a teacher at the Enaleni, Lz Nguba. The teacher, who asked to remain annoymous, said that she had seen some changes in some of the students whose homes had been destroyed.
Nzama said their school at times offers them the opportunity to camp and study at the school overnight, which she finds helpful but it is not enough. “What I saw won't be easy to be flushed out of my mind, and I don't see myself passing matric. I am depressed and stressed. I so wish that I at least had a place to stay until I complete my matric.
She said that she was experiencing flashbacks and would like to keep busy, but the temporary accommodation does not allow the freedom to keep occupied due to the restrictions.