Pupils plead guilty to ‘piledriver’ assault

2013-08-27 00:00

THE two teenagers accused of performing a wrestling manoeuvre on a Shallcross teenager have pleaded guilty to assault at a school disciplinary hearing.

The Witness has learnt that the two accused pleaded guilty at a special meeting convened at Marklands Secondary School in Shallcross yesterday.

This was confirmed by two sources present at the hearing.

Zhain Abu-Baker (18) was nearly killed by two fellow school pupils on July 22. They allegedly used a move called the “piledriver” to knock his head into a concrete surface. Several neck vertebrae were fractured and there was an initial concern that he might be paralysed for life.

His uncle, Vernon Moodley, who was present at the disciplinary proceeding, confirmed the accused pleaded guilty.

The minutes of the meeting will now be sent to the Education Department with a decision likely either by the end of the week or early next week.

Department spokesperson Muzi Mahlambi said: “We are aware of the disciplinary process. The principal and an education ward manager are involved. The findings will be submitted to the DOE’s head of department [Nkosinathi Sishi] who will apply his mind to the evidence,” said Mahlambi.

Abu-Baker recently told The Witness that he has since considered leaving the province and joining his family in Gauteng over his concern that the two alleged bullies would not face any serious sanction from the school or criminal prosecution.

Markland’s principal Anwar Khan has previously told The Witness that the maximum punishment a school can hand out is five days’ suspension, however, if the offence is deemed serious enough it can be sent to the department, which has the power to expel.

The accused minors, who have also been criminally charged with attempted murder, will reappear before the Chatsworth Magistrate’s Court on September 6.

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