As they become the centre of attention in the media following the deaths of two students with a week, the University of Fort Hare has placed two staff members on precautionary suspension pending the outcome of a sexual harassment and gender-based violence probe.

A communiqué sent by the university’s vice-chancellor and principal, Professor Sakhela Buhlungu, at the end of last month advised staff and students of the suspensions.

In it, Buhlungu said the precautionary suspension of the staff members was due to unrelated cases. He added that the cases emanated from complaints lodged against them for alleged serious misconduct.

The communiqué  read: “The allegations of serious misconduct relate to the university’s policy on harassment, sexual harassment and gender-based violence, adopted on 13 September 2019, as well as the university’s code of conduct and related policies,” the advisory, also posted on the institution’s social media platforms.

Buhlungu said the university took contraventions of the policy serious and the two cases would receive the requisite attention to ensure disciplinary inquiries took place as soon as possible.