Pit toilet scandal: Principal released on R2 500 bail, barred from returning to school

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Luthuthu Senior Secondary School principal Lubeko Lennox Mgandela was released on bail by the Tsolo Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.
Luthuthu Senior Secondary School principal Lubeko Lennox Mgandela was released on bail by the Tsolo Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.
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  • A school principal accused of child abuse, after forcing a pupil into a pit toilet, has been released on R2 500 bail.
  • Lubeko Lennox Mgandela appeared in the Tsolo Magistrate's Court.
  • He is not allowed to go to the school until the case is finalised. 

The principal accused of forcing a pupil into a pit toilet to retrieve his cellphone, has been released on R2 500 bail.

This comes after 49-year-old Lubeko Lennox Mgandela, the principal of Luthuthu Junior Secondary School, appeared in the Tsolo Magistrate's Court on Wednesday on a charge of child abuse.

As part of his bail conditions, Mgandela is not allowed to interfere with witnesses or the investigation, and is not allowed to go to the school until the case has been finalised.

READ | Principal arrested for allegedly forcing pupil into pit toilet to search for his cellphone

It is alleged the principal made an 11-year-old pupil undress and enter the pit toilet, which was full of human faeces. A rope was allegedly tied around the child's upper body before the child was lowered into the toilet to retrieve the principal's cellphone from it.

The case was postponed to 27 May for further investigation.

The incident has sparked nationwide condemnation.

Apart from the criminal investigation, the SA Council of Educators (SACE) has launched its own probe into what it calls "unprofessional conduct".

Eastern Cape Education MEC Fundile Gade has placed Mgandela on precautionary suspension amid an internal investigation.

Teachers' union, the National Association of Professional Teachers of SA (Naptosa), wants Mgandela to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. The SA Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) has condemned the incident and says the matter should run its course.

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