South Africa: University's Student Body Suspends Members Suspected of Rape

Two members of the Student Representative Council (SRC) of the University of Cape Town (UCT) were suspended from the council on Wednesday pending an investigation into rape and sexual harassment allegations against them.

The SRC made the decision to suspend both members at their weekly meeting. It said the allegations were taken seriously and efforts are being made to "strengthen the voice of the survivor and hold alleged perpetrators accountable".

The student who made the allegations against one of the accused reported the incident to the Pan Africanist Student Movement of Azania (PASMA), according to a statement from them.

Both students agreed to have consensual sex in the SRC member's room in Liesbeek Gardens residence, said the statement. However, the student later told the accused that she no longer wanted to have sex with him.

"It is then alleged that the accused was unhappy about the decision and ignored the student for the rest of the evening. The student maintains that this was a form of manipulation to induce sex," read the statement.

No details of the complaint against the other SRC member have been made available.

The issue has been referred to the university's Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Office.

An official statement from UCT confirms that the university is aware of the allegations and will be investigated.

"We are highly concerned and take seriously the alleged incidents. UCT has services available to offer support to students involved or affected by these alleged incidents," read the statement.

Anyone with information concerning the allegations is urged to report to the Campus Protection Services.

No charges against the accused have been filed.


Authors: All Africa

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