WOMEN for Change (WFC) have called on Zambian school authorities to desist from concealing sexual violence cases against pupils and students by teachers in institutions of learning.
In a statement, WFC executive director Lumba Siyanga said she was saddened by media reports about a 16 year old girl of Milenge School in Luapula who was raped by her mathematics teacher.
She explained that the head teacher and the girl’s parents allegedly transferred her to another school in order to silence the matter and had the case disposed of.
Ms Siyanga said the girl’s whereabouts were still unknown and called for quick intervention into the matter so that the teacher who raped the girl could be arrested and prosecuted.
“We are deeply saddened by media reports about a 16 year old girl of Milenge School in Luapula who was raped by her mathematics teacher. In circumstances that are less than clear, the girl has disappeared from her school and her whereabouts have remained unknown. There is connivance between the girl’s parents and teachers of Milenge School and we are calling on the police to act quickly on the matter. We fear that the case may be closed and the culprit may get away with it,” Ms Siyanga said.
Ms Siyanga said that it was disappointing that those expected to ensure there was justice had allegedly conspired to frustrate the cause of justice.
She has called on the Ministry of Education to put in place measures that ensured that pupils were safeguarded and perpetrators of sexual violence against pupils were brought to book.
“WfC would like to express its sadness over the incident including others that have occurred in a similar manner and calls on the Ministry of Education to ensure the safety of children in schools by ensuring that perpetrators do not go scot free for committing crimes against children and society,” said Ms Siyanga.
Ms Siyanga charged that children were in school to get an education and that it was expected that teachers uphold the highest standards to exemplify their teaching.
She said that the future of children and society at large was endangered when school heads shield criminals of rape and defile in their schools.
Ms Siyanga said that survivors of sexual violence were the ones that were punished by society and that those entrusted with power were the ones that committed criminal offences.
She has since demanded for a full report at the end of the case that ensured that justice was served.