Two University of Pretoria students filmed using the k-word in a now-viral video on social media have been suspended, said university management.
Catherine Reynders and Bodene Benade filmed themselves using the K-word in a local bar after one of their phones was stolen.
It is understood Benade, accidentally sent the video to her final year Physiotherapy WhatsApp group when a friend used her phone to record the racial slurs.
In a statement issued on Friday, university spokesperson Candice Jooster said an investigation into the matter was underway.
“We can confirm that the two women in the video are students at the University of Pretoria. An investigation into the matter is underway and the students will be suspended today pending a disciplinary inquiry,” said Jooster.
This means the two students will have no access to campus and that they’re subject to a disciplinary inquiry. The students are in their final year and may have completed exams already. Inside Education could not confirm this without their student numbers. Jooster said she was uncertain of what the consequences of their actions would be if they did not return next year.
The university said it strongly condemns the use of such derogatory and racist language.
In the video, two women can be heard. One shouts “a f**king ka**ir stole my phone” while the other says “you hear that? A ka**ir stole this phone…” Both women then continue to shout the k-word and refer to whoever stole the phone as a whore.
“Don’t play this in front of Zamani,” one of them says.
The video ends with them smiling at the camera.
In the WhatsApp group screenshots posted on social media, Benade asked her classmates to ignore the message saying she was just helping a drunk friend.
She wrote: “I really apologize from the bottom of my heart to anyone that’s been offended – so sorry, completely unacceptable 💔 she’s been sent home!”
“Let’s scream the K word from the top of our lungs then apologize for it” 4th year students at Tuks! We will expose you one by one! pic.twitter.com/uks4SXNR80
— QUEEN (@Ma_pu_le) October 27, 2017
Her classmates were not impressed and voiced their anger making it clear they could not ignore the video and its contents. It was then that Benade apologised again – this time referring to herself and not the friend.
“I’m so sorry 💔 please forgive me – we are all human and have made mistakes and this is an awful one on my part – I’m truelly (sic) sorry,” she wrote.
Other students voiced their anger, discontent and hurt about the incident on social media calling for the institution to take the necessary action against the two students.
Here is a thread of the conversation below:
A small thread: A Tuks student accidentally sent this vid to her final yr Physiotherapy WhatsApp group when a friend used her phone to record “I’m fucking tired of these kaffirs…” pic.twitter.com/X4qatqYShx
— K O K E T S O (@Mokoditoa_K) October 27, 2017