The Department of Social Development on Thursday slammed a hoax call made to the Gender Based Violence Command Centre by a radio presenter posing as a distressed matric learner.
Social Development spokesperson Lumka Oliphant said it later emerged that the telephone conversation was from a radio presenter from a Johannesburg community radio station.
“The incident was unfortunate as the time wasted on the hoax call could have been used constructively to assist a learner or people who really needed the support,” said Oliphant.
According to Oliphant, the caller was heard telling the social worker that she did not see her name in a newspaper and she “thought” she had failed.
“In a calm and professional manner, the social worker was heard advising the caller to call the number provided by the Department of Basic Education as a credible source and not rely solely on the newspaper.”
Government has been stressing that matriculants should obtain their results from their schools or the Department of Basic education as the accurate and credible source of matric results.
Oliphant said the Department of Social Development appreciated the role the media played in informing, educating and holding government to account, but said the “abuse and mocking of what is a much needed resource cannot be acceptable”.
“With the assistance of the media, the line has received an unprecedented number of calls since midnight from distraught matriculants and parents who are anxious about the future of their children.”
Matriculants were encouraged to continue making use of the line by dialing 0800 428 428 or *120*7867#