FOR IMMEDIATE ATTENTION
13 May 2021
NUPSAW CONDEMNS SANPARKS CEO’S BEHAVIOUR AMID SEXUAL ASSAULT ALLEGATIONS
The National Union of Public Service and Allied Workers (NUPSAW) condemns in strongest terms any form of misconduct by SANPARKS Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Fundisile Mketeni, following his allegations of assault and sexual assault towards a female visitor at the SANParks facility.
NUPSAW is gravely concerned, and we wish to state without any fear of contradiction that on GBV (gender-based violence) matters, we believe and side with the victim. Without pronouncing on innocence or guilt, we urge law enforcement agencies to pursue the case with the seriousness it deserves. We demand the case to be treated just like other high-profile cases and for the South African Police Services (SAPS) and the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to take gender-based violence seriously by prioritising investigations into the matter.
The decision by the CEO to take special leave is undoubtedly motivated by SANParks desire to protect its public image and distance itself from any allegations of sexual assault. Whatever the motivation, however, it demonstrates that SANParks and cooperations now feel they cannot ignore allegations of sexual misconduct and abuse, even when they are directed at some of their most senior employees. We demand Mketeni be suspended – pending investigation rather than being placed on special leave.
We noted that it had become common practice that men who occupy positions of power are protected after committing such disgraceful acts. Those holding powerful positions and accused of crimes must be subjected to the most intensive scrutiny, and the justice system must not hold back. It cannot be that South Africa we know, with its’s entrenched spirit of Ubuntu, diversity and humility, is fast becoming an unsafe habitat for women and children.
We trust that the system will not fail this time, ensuring that justice will prevail because justice delayed is justice denied. Failure to do that, NUPSAW will be the first to protest should we feel that the justice system is going soft on anyone holding senior positions.
For more information:
NUPSAW Media Officer
012 342 1674
083 712 1614