A South African teacher has been fired after a 14-year-old girl recorded him propositioning her for sex. The young girl used a cellphone that her mother gave her to gather evidence against the teacher.
The Welkom Preparatory School teacher was fired on Wednesday September 22, 2021 after the Education Labour Relations Council (ELRC) found him guilty of committing an act of sexual assault on a pupil.
ELRC panellist Shiraz Osman, who listened to the recording, said the mother’s decision to give her child a cellphone was “a great thought”.
The schoolgirl, referred to as ‘Ms X’ in the finding, testified that she was uncomfortable when the teacher whispered in her ear that he was “not going to penetrate her too much”.
The child told the panel that the teacher was giving her a ride home in his car on a rainy day. She sat in the front passenger seat while two other children were in the back.
“Ms X further testified that she had relayed the incident to her mother, who had given her a cellular phone to record the educator. A great thought. I must admit,” Osman said.
Two days later, the girl recorded the teacher telling her they would take a drive, drink alcohol and kiss each other
“The educator went on to tell the learner that he desired her lips because they looked like her vagina. He asked the learner for her cell number and that the other learners should not know about the discussion that was held,” Osman said.
“He gave Ms X his cellphone number and asked her not to repeat what he had discussed. When the learner asked the educator for clarity about what she should ‘give’ him, the educator indicated that she will give him her vagina,” he added.
“She appeared to be an honest and bright young lady. I am not persuaded that she would fabricate such a story. In any event she had had the conversation recorded,” he said as he confirmed he was convinced by the girl’s testimony.
The teacher did not attend the hearing but in a written statement he claimed the girl asked him for alcohol.
“He suggested that the learner had asked him if he would expect some sexual ‘payment’. Seemingly, the educator has a fabricated version,” Osman said.
“It is evident that the learner had been sexually assaulted by the educator. The sequence of events was corroborated by all the witnesses. There is nothing to suggest that any of these witnesses had indeed fabricated any of their testimonies.”
He ordered the teacher’s immediate dismissal.