Cape Town - The rape and murder of first-year film and media studies Uyinene 'Nene' Mrwetyana has left the University of Cape Town (UCT) "shocked to the core".
In a statement released on Monday, UCT's Vice-Chancellor Mamokgethi Phakeng and its executive sent their condolences to the family of Mrwetyana who had "endured unimaginable suffering, pain and anxiety for the past week".
On Monday a 42-year-old Clareinch Post Office employee appeared in the Wynberg Magistrate's Court where he was charged with the alleged rape and murder of Mrwetyana as well as defeating the ends of justice.
The court ordered that the identity of the accused not be released and that no pictures be taken.
The accused is back in court on November 5 via an audio link from prison.
"The fact that a young female student has been died in this horrific manner is devastating, and it has shocked us to our core. It is incomprehensible that a young life, with so much potential, has been stolen from her family and our community. It is even more distressing that this horrible incident is one of many where women – young and old, and even girls – are ripped from our communities in such a violent manner," said Phakeng.
She said that many people in Mrwetyana's res Roscommon House in Claremont, in her class and in her faculty have been affected by her death and that counselling assistance was available to staff and students via the SADAG UCT Student Careline at 0800 24 25 26.
"Losing a child is one of the most painful experiences for a family, but to lose her in this manner is even more tragic and heartbreaking. The university executive remains deeply distressed by the unacceptable levels of violence perpetuated against women and the marginalised in South African society on a daily basis," Phakeng said.