‘I fear for my life’‚ says Reiger Park teacher
While normal schooling continued for most learners and teachers at Reiger Park NR 2 High School which has been hit by a sex scandal‚ this wasn’t the case for one teacher who attended a media briefing held on the school premises on Tuesday.
The briefing was called by Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi.
“I’m fearing for my safety because I’ve been implicated that I revealed those videos‚” said the teacher who sat in the corner of the classroom where the briefing was held.
He raised his issue as Lesufi took questions from the media.
Lesufi quickly interjected.
“Officials from the department will deal with that issue‚” Lesufi responded to him.
After the media briefing‚ the teacher did not head to class but was seen heading towards the exit of the school.
He later told some members of the media that he had been told not to engage with them but with the officials handling the case.
Earlier‚ Lesufi had told the media that he had learnt of the scandal through an anonymous message sent to him.
“It was last week Thursday that I received an anonymous message from a parent with a series of pictures‚ requesting us to intervene and intervene immediately‚” said Lesufi.
The Boksburg school was thrust into the spotlight this week after a series of pictures and videos of the principal allegedly engaging in sexual acts with a learner‚ teachers and food handlers at the school went viral.
Some parents have accused the school governing body of being aware of the incident prior to the principal resigning in October.
Lesufi said while he was aware of the allegations‚ he had since received a memorandum calling for the SGB to be disbanded.
He however did not believe that this was a solution as the SGB’s term was coming to an end on March 1.
“The approach is simple. Punish the perpetrators that have been identified and we are taking that route‚” said Lesufi.
Meanwhile‚ psychologists from Child Line and the Teddy Bear Clinic are present at the school‚ urging learners to use pieces of paper to write down any information they may have regarding their former principal’s alleged acts of sexual misconduct.
The pupils were told to submit the letters anonymously.
They are trying to identify whether there were any other students who allegedly fell prey to the principal who had been at the school for 15 years.
By Tuesday‚ none had come forward.
Meanwhile‚ police have revealed that a young girl clad in school uniform‚ who was seen kissing the former principal in an image that has gone viral‚ left the school several years ago.
Lieutenant-Colonel Heila Niemand said they had reason to believe the picture was taken around three years ago when the girl was a Grade 12 pupil at the school.
Niemand said they were still working on verifying whether she was below the age of 18 when the incident happened.
If so‚ the principal‚ who left his job two weeks ago‚ would be charged with numerous counts‚ including manufacturing of child pornography.
The principal submitted his resignation in October and left on January 15‚ allegedly after videos and pictures of himself with a learner‚ teachers and other school employees in compromising positions were leaked on social media.
“No criminal charges have been formulated as yet. We are still trying to identify the victims... Investigations are still at an early stage‚” Niemand said.
Meanwhile‚ it has since emerged that at least three other teachers have been implicated in the sex scandal.
“All the implicated teachers have been removed from the school and all the officials depicted in the videos have been withdrawn and will report to the district‚” said Lesufi.
His spokesman Steve Mabona said that the teachers had admitted that they consented to performing sexual acts with the principal on school premises.
Lesufi however‚ highlighted that the food handlers who were also implicated “were among the victims“.
Meanwhile‚ the department of education was still liaising with its lawyers to change the principal’s resignation to a dismissal.