Windhoek – The permanent secretary in the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, Sanet Steenkamp, has condemned all forms of sexual harassment, abuse or indecent assault of learners by teachers.
Her comments follow a recent incident wherein a teacher, Moses Shingo from Otjikoto Secondary School in the Oshikoto Region, was found guilty in Tsumeb Magistrate’s Court on December 14, 2016 of indecently assaulting a learner.
On Monday this week, Steenkamp said Shingo – who was widely condemned by the public for his actions – tendered his resignation to the ministry with immediate effect, stating that the reasons for the termination of his services with the ministry are “personal”.
Detective Chief Inspector Edena Nawa of the Oshikoto regional police yesterday confirmed to New Era that Shingo was indeed arrested last year for indecent assault.
She said he immediately pleaded guilty to the charge against him and was fined N$3000, which he has since paid.
According to Steenkamp, the ministry intervened in the matter swiftly.
It was later established after the case has been reported to the police that Shingo had requested early retirement. As he was busy processing his request for early retirement, she said, the ministry learned about the case of indecent assault.
She noted that appropriate action would also be taken against the school management for failing to report the matter, in accordance with regulations stipulated in the Public Service Act of 1995.
She said it should be noted that the ministry condemns any and all forms of assault by staff members of learners, saying it is a major transgression – one which infringes gravely on the rights of learners, leaving them violated, vulnerable and traumatised.