Former Wits University senior lecturer Tsepo wa Mamatu has publicly apologised for the first time since his dismissal last year for sexual harassment.
“I apologise to my community, my society and every woman for failing them,” wa Mamatu said in the message posted on his Facebook account.
“I will not be mute in my shame. I AM SORRY”, said wa Mamatu.
Wa Mamatu wrote that after his dismissal from the university he “went into a journey of exile, into a space where I asked of myself difficult and hard questions”.
Wa Mamatu apologised for his “lack of judgement” and admitted that he had abused his power over students.
“I apologise for abusing my power, vested on me by the university, to fail to be consistent with principles and values of best practice,” he said.
In addition to his former students, wa Mamatu also offered apologies to his friends and family as well as “my community, my society and every woman for failing them.”
Wa Mamatu signed off his Facebook apology with the words: “I am at your feet”.
Wa Mamatu’s apology comes after months of denying that he had sexually harassed students.
In a series of articles reported by Wits Vuvuzela last year, Wa Mamatu maintained that he had not sexually harassed anyone but rather had relationships with them.
Wa Mamatu was due to be a panelist at The African Arts Institute debate on Monday evening but appeared to have cancelled his appearance. The debate follows the removal of his play, By My Grave, from the Cape Town Fringe festival.
- Wits Vuvuzela: Dismissed “sex-pests” speak: Dr Last Moyo and Tsepo wa Mamatu react to their sackings, August 2, 2013.
- Wits Vuvuzela: ‘Sex pest’ hearings concluding. July 26, 2013.
- Wits Vuvuzela: Exclusive: Tsepo wa Mamatu speaks. May 31, 2013
- FULL REPORT: Wits University’s sexual harassment report, September 2013
- Wits Vuvuzela: ‘Sex pest’ denies new play is about sexual harrassment, August 31, 2014