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More pupils accused of sexual abuse

Seven Western Cape pupils have been expelled for alleged sexual misconduct at schools.

ANCWL marches against rape in the Western Cape on 21 February 2013. Picture: Chanel September/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Education Department says it is concerned by the growing number of learners who are accused of sexually abusing their classmates.

Seven pupils have been expelled for alleged sexual misconduct at schools since January.

In total the department received 10 referral cases for expulsion.

Education spokesperson Bronagh Casey said, "This includes allegations of sexual harassment, indecent exposure, moral misconduct, sexual assault, masturbation and sexual intercourse. The department views such cases in a very serious light."

In 2011, 10 Western Cape learners were expelled after they allegedly sexually abused fellow pupils.

In 2012, Interpol named South African the rape capital of the world.

In July, a four-month-old baby girl and a seven-year-old boy were raped in Ceres. The girl has since undergone five surgeries and is currently recovering in hospital.

A 25-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the incident.

Earlier this month Justice Minister Jeff Radebe announced the reinstatement of courts specialising in rape cases.