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Teacher who sexually assaulted pupil in 2017 finally suspended after court case

Teacher Ayanda Ntuthu continued teaching at the same school until last month despite having been convicted on two counts of sexual assault in March this year at the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court. Photo: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Teacher Ayanda Ntuthu continued teaching at the same school until last month despite having been convicted on two counts of sexual assault in March this year at the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court. Photo: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jun 13, 2022

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Cape Town - Education David Maynier has said that a Cape Town teacher who sexually assaulted a pupil five years ago has finally been suspended and will face a disciplinary hearing.

Teacher Ayanda Ntuthu continued teaching at the same school until last month despite having been convicted on two counts of sexual assault in March this year at the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court.

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It emerged that the Western Cape Department of Education (WCED) had said it had been unaware that Ntuthu had been prosecuted and found guilty until after the event and that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said its responsibilities did not extend to informing the department about the prosecution.

ACDP MPL Ferlon Christians had asked Maynier whether he was aware of the matter, what steps the department had taken against the teacher and what support was provided to the victim.

“This case happened in 2017 and this educator was teaching at the school until 2022; it is only this year when the court found this educator guilty of sexual assault.”

He said his concern was the trauma that the child in the matter had been through, especially since back when the matter was first reported, the complaint had been dismissed for lack of sufficient evidence.

Christians said the assault happened at a sleepover at which there was clearly not enough supervision.

“That child is traumatised and while I know there is counselling and all that, such an incident must never happen to a child again.”

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Latching on to Christian’s question, ANC education spokesperson Khalid Sayed wanted to know the number of teachers currently facing sexual assault allegations against learners but who continue to teach at schools in the province.

“I ask because the question is being raised in communities. We have classes and schools that are suspended because learners are protesting because of this very thing and we’ve been called to intervene at times,” said Sayed.

Maynier said: “I am obviously concerned about this matter, and for that reason I have instructed the department to undertake a review so that we can be sure that this does not happen again.”

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The review would consider, among other things, how such cases are monitored and how information is shared between the department and the NPA, he said.

In the meantime, Maynier said the child had received psycho-social support and that Nthuthu had been instructed not to contact any student, member of staff, or member of the school governing body and not to enter the school premises at any time.

Responding to Sayed, he said he was not aware of any other cases, but also did not have the data at hand and invited him to send a written question in order to receive a comprehensive reply.

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“I obviously look forward to further engagements on the matter so that we can ensure that this never happens again,” Maynier said.

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Cape Argus

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