MEC welcomes principal’srape sentence

2011-01-27 00:00

EDUCATION MEC Senzo Mchunu hailed the Camperdown Regional Court’s decision to jail for 18 years a school principal who raped a 14 year-old orphan.

The MEC warned teachers that such behaviour will not be tolerated.

The girl’s family say the sentence has restored their faith in the justice system.

Georgedale Primary School principal Nhlanhla Victor Mbongwe (48) was convicted in September last year of the rape that had happened in March.

Said Mchunu, “Criminals must be locked up and kept as far away from society as possible and from our children in particular … We urge parents, learners and community members to come forward and report such cases. Never allow yourself to be persuaded to drop charges if your child has been molested, raped or harassed by anyone, even a teacher. It is wrong and we must fight it at all cost.”

The girl’s aunt said the incident has deeply affected her niece — she is withdrawn and struggles to cope at school.

But she said the news of Mbongwe’s sentence after a lengthy court battle has lifted a burden from her shoulders.

“God is great. There is justice in South Africa and it is working. I have seen it for myself. He used to come to court and laugh at the witnesses.

“The social worker and investigating officers told me there was no case. The social worker even took the child out of the place of safety. I had to personally look for a school for the child in the middle of the year. My own mother was angry with me for reporting this because she was scared she would be victimised.

“It has been a long road but I’m glad we stood even amidst the mockery and threatening phone calls,” the aunt added.

Mbongwe owns a soccer club, Junior Aces, and is an influential figure in the Georgedale area.

He is a married and has three children.

Rape victim’s aunt

He used to come to court and laugh at the witnesses. The social worker and investigating officers told me there was no case.

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