DUNDONALD, March 13 – The Mpumalanga education department said on Monday it rejected the resignation letter of the principal of Ligugu Secondary School in Dundonald and started an internal investigation into allegations that he molested three boys, who are learners at the same school.
“The department strongly condemns the alleged sexual assault on learners at Ligugu Secondary School,” said spokesman for the department Gerald Sambo.
“It is alleged that the principal sexually molested a boy learner within the school’s premises on March 3. The matter has been brought to the attention of the department by the chief of the community of Dondoland in the Gert Sibande district.
Two other boy learners also came forward and claimed that the principal sexually molested them as well. The principal is suspended and he has since turned in a letter of resignation, which the department rejected pending the allegations levelled against him.”
Dundonald is a town about 160 km from Mbombela in the Gert Sibande district municipality.
Sambo said the labour directorate of the education department was investigating the matter internally so that a disciplinary process could take place.
Provincial police spokesman Brigadier Leonard Hlathi said the 53-year-old principal was arrested last week for allegedly raping three pupils aged between 17 and 19. He did not say if the three alleged victims were boys.
“The incidents occurred last year and at the beginning of this [March] month,” said Hlathi.
The principal, who was not named due to the nature of the case he was facing, appeared in the Mayflower Periodical Court on Wednesday on allegations of rape and was remanded in custody pending a formal bail application, added Hlathi.