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DBE faces legal action over decision not to publish 2021 matric results in the media

Excitement mounts up at a Eldorado Park petrol station as Nikita Phillips, Mbali Maseko, Sylvester May, Jonathan Robson and Cecilia Phillips finds numbers of their friends who also passed matric. Picture: Timothy Bernard 06.01.2015

Excitement mounts up at a Eldorado Park petrol station as Nikita Phillips, Mbali Maseko, Sylvester May, Jonathan Robson and Cecilia Phillips finds numbers of their friends who also passed matric. Picture: Timothy Bernard 06.01.2015

Published Jan 17, 2022

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The Department of Basic Education is facing a legal challenge over its decision to stop publishing the matric results on public media platforms.

The matter will be heard by the Pretoria High Court on Tuesday, January 18.

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The DBE announced last week that matric exam results will no longer be published on any media public platforms in order to comply with the requirements of the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA).

Three organisations, including Civil society group Afriforum, have approached the courts opposing the department’s decision against publishing the 2021 matric results due to be released on Friday .

In a statement, the department said it was guided by the need to comply with all the legal obligations, but in the final analysis the Constitution commands the DBE to act in the best interest of the learner.

"In a quest to strike this delicate balance of complying with POPIA and act in the best interest of the learner, the department has been engaged with a number of role players, including the Information Regulator and the South African National Editors' Forum (SANEF)."

The DBE said it would not oppose the pending litigation and would abide by the court's decision.

"The department has communicated its position to stakeholders it has engaged, including SANEF and other parties.

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"Meanwhile, the department urges candidates to register on the DBE website to view their results when they become available. Candidates will have to go through a two-step verification process before receiving confirmation of their registration. A 13-digit ID number and the examination number will be required for registration."

According to the department, the DBE website is zero-rated, which means it can be accessed whether you have data or not.

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