A photo taken on Wednesday, January 9, at a public school in Schweizer-Reneke, a rural province in northwestern South Africa, sparked heated controversy. We see a class in which four black children are separated from the other children, all white.

The cliché, taken by the teacher on the occasion of the new school year, was shared more than 700,000 times on Facebook in 24 hours.

The children were quite disturbed
(…). The teacher organized her class so that they find their marks quickly ", Explained to the press a manager of the establishment, Jozeph du Plessis.

The teacher was suspended, reports AFP on its Twitter account dedicated to "fact-checking" but the school said that "
there was no intention on the part of the teacher to separate the children according to their race

An open investigation

In one country still subject to strong racial tensions25 years after the official end of apartheid, the photo was scandalous. On Thursday morning, parents came to pick up their children before the end of classes while protesters were protesting in front of the school.

It seems that there are many cases of racism here
Said provincial education official Sello Lehari, who was there on Thursday. He requested the opening of an investigation.

The Democratic Alliance (DA), the main opposition party in the country, denounced the
And stressed the need for "
reject racism
". "
We will build a South Africa for all if we are all sitting at the same table
Added the DA.



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