Girl, 14, too scared to go to school 'after four boys gang-raped her'
The department of education in North West says it is devastated by the reported rape of a 14-year-old girl, allegedly by four boys.
The incident took place last week, two days before schools reopened.
The teenager has not been able to attend school because she fears seeing two of her alleged rapists, according to a family spokesperson. As the victim is a minor, her identity is withheld.
“According to information at our disposal, the learner was in a queue to finalise registration at her new high school while her mother went fetch her report at another school. We were told she got tired and decided to go home, and then the incident occurred,” said education spokesperson, Elias Malindi.
He said the department was "devastated and disturbed" that a pupil fell victim to such a crime, and called for action to be taken against the perpetrators.
“We want the culprits to be called to book and serve the harshest sentence possible,” said Malindi.
He said the department’s hands were tied if no action was taken by police against the alleged culprits.
He did, however, vow that the safety of the teenager would be prioritised.
“We do not have control over incidents taking place outside our school premises, but we will make sure the learner is safe and gets all the support she needs,” said Malindi.
He said the department would soon visit the family to offer support and to counsel the teenager.
It remains unclear if the pupil will be placed into a different school as the family said it could not afford to pay transportation to a school further away.
Provincial police spokesperson Col Adele Myburg confirmed last week that a case had been opened but was later withdrawn.
Explaining why, she said: "The case was withdrawn due to no prospect of a successful prosecution.”
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