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By Citizen Reporter


Racism allegations rock Cape Town school as SAHRC probes Stellenbosch incident

Matric pupils are protesting against the alleged racism at the Good Hope Seminary High School.

The Good Hope Seminary High School has been rocked by allegations of racism following an incident between two matriculants.

Matric pupils protested outside the school in Cape Town for the second day running, regarding a recent incident where an Indian pupil allegedly called a black girl a derogatory name.

The pupils have also accused the school of not addressing racism and sexual harassment cases.

ALSO READ: Racism remains SA’s most stubborn problem, as SAHRC sees spike in complaints

“When the incident was finally heard by the teacher who is in charge of us grade 12s, I think she swept it under the carpet.

“She was just taking sides in it… she took the other girl’s side who used the N-word on another black [pupil] at our school,” one of the pupils told eNCA on Tuesday.

The matriculant pointed out that the pupils have been complaining about racism since 2018.

“We have had cases where our principal uses the word ‘darkie’ to black girls, where teachers refer to girls as looking like domestic workers, where black girls are told we shouldn’t be at the school [and that] we should go to the townships because we can’t speak Afrikaans,” she said.

The Citizen has reached out to the Western Cape Department of Education over the matter.

Meanwhile, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi is set to meet with the school management team, school governing body (SGB) and parents at the Hoërskool Jan Viljoen in Randfontein regarding the outcome of investigations into allegations of racism and sexual assault at the school.

An alleged racially-motivated fight broke out between two groups of pupils at the school in February this year. 

Stellenbosch incident

The protests at Good Hope Seminary High School comes after Stellenbosch University on Monday suspended a student after an apparent racist incident.

The incident saw a white student urinating on a black student’s books and laptop after breaking into his room at Huis Marais residence in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The university condemned the incident and confirmed a probe into the matter.

“A further swift, but detailed investigation will determine the final outcomes. Expulsion or criminal charges are not excluded from the possible available options, based on the investigation’s findings,” the university’s spokesperson Martin Viljoen said.

The white student has since been removed from the Huis Marais residence, while the victim has been offered counselling.

READ MORE: Former model C school in Groblersdal accused of racism

While the Students’ Representative Council (SRC) has called for the alleged perpetrator to be expelled, the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has indicated that it has received two complaints regarding the alleged racism incident.

Speaking to Newzroom Afrika on Tuesday, SAHRC commissioner Andre Gaum said the commission would also investigate the Stellenbosch incident.

“The commission has decided to investigate the matter as on the face of it or prima facie… it appears that the violation of the affected student’s rights has taken place. We have received two complaints at our Western Cape provincial office,” he said.

“If these allegations are true, this was indeed an atrocious and despicable incident. The facts need to be determined by the commission first. We call on everyone to also wait on the commission to conclude its investigation so that we can establish the facts,” Gaum added.

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