Teacher who threw soup at pupil off hook

Alfred Moselakgomo

Alfred Moselakgomo

A Mpumalanga teacher has avoided jail after the family of a pupil who she allegedly burnt with hot soup decided not lay charges against her.

Enesia Ubisi, a teacher at DD Mabuza High School, which is situated at Block B in Tonga, Nkomazi, was facing assault charges after she allegedly spilt hot soup on the breasts of a pupil.

But the family of Debra Hlobile Mkhondo, 20, has decided not to press charges against Ubisi.

The department said the pupils were in a study camp when an argument arose between Mkhondo and Ubisi. At the time, the pupils were being served lunch.

"There was disagreement between Mkhondo and Ubisi on whether she wanted beef or chicken soup," said Hlahla Ngwenya, the provincial education department spokesman.

"The teacher argued that all pupils who did not want to be served beef were told to register their names, and when Mkhondo insisted that she did register in the chicken list, an argument ensued during which Ubisi allegedly threw hot soup at Mkhondo."

Mkhondo sustained third degree burns to her breasts and was taken to Tonga Hospital.

The teacher's disciplinary hearing was held last week but the verdict was withheld until early next year because the presiding officer, Willie Kutumela, needed more time to study evidence from both Mkhondo and Ubisi.

Ngwenya said the South African Council for Educators (Sace) was also investigating the matter.

Sace is an organisation aimed at enhancing the status of the teaching profession, and to promote the development of educators and their professional conduct.