WATCH | Teacher linked to Amy'Leigh's kidnapping suspended

2019-09-05 18:47
Amy'Leigh de Jager. (Twitter)

Amy'Leigh de Jager. (Twitter)

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The teacher alleged to have been involved in the kidnapping of Grade R pupil Amy'Leigh de Jager has been suspended from Laerskool Kollegepark in Vanderbijlpark, Gauteng.

This was announced by Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi at the school on Thursday afternoon, following a meeting with the School Governing Body. 

Six-year-old De Jager was snatched by four men from her mother, Angeline, outside the school gate. The suspects fled the scene in a white Toyota Fortuner. 

Lesufi announced that he endorsed the decision and a disciplinary hearing would be instituted pending the teacher's court appearance.

Lesufi clarified that the staffer in question was not De Jager's classroom teacher and had joined the school at the beginning of the 2019 academic year when the school introduced grade R. 

"The school received references from relevant resources that would have assisted them to take a decision to appoint the said teacher," he explained.

"They assured me the teacher was well-known within the community and therefore her appointment couldn't have raised any eyebrows because it's somebody who is known."

The school said it was increasing its security measures, with a firm to be hired, with guards stationed outside while the CCTV monitoring system has also been beefed up.

"We can confirm that after the school management met with the parents of the kidnapped learner, parents have accepted the explanation of the school and have accepted that their children will come back to the same school and that is the reason why we are strengthening security," Lesufi said. 

SGB chairperson Andries Pienaar said the school was happy and grateful that the grade R pupil was safe and that her parents continued to trust the school, despite the incident.

He said De Jager's parents, Angeline and Wynand had come to the school to thank it for its contribution in ensuring the young girl made it back home alive. 

PIC| 'Almost like a dungeon': Kidnappers held Amy'Leigh in 'a dump'

Counselling for Amy'Leigh's family is underway while the educators and pupils at the school will also be receiving it, Pienaar said. 

While the suspected teacher is in police custody, the school has hired a replacement.

Pienaar said SGB posts undergo thorough screening before a position is filled.

He said the said teacher had a good reference and in no way was it expected that she would be involved. 

"For us [this] is like a big shock. I think it's a one in a million, that something like this happens is unfortunate," he said. 

National police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo told News24 on Thursday that the three arrested suspects in the case would appear in the Vanderbijlpark Magistrate's Court on Monday.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  crime
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