Instagram suicide tragedy as sex attack victim posts tragic message before killing herself

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south africa rape sexual assault violence suicide Khensani Maseko

The 23-year-old student from the Rhodes University in Grahamstown committed suicide on August 3, posting a message on social media before her death.

Khensani Maseko caption alongside a picture showing what appeared to be her date of birth and that day’s date: «No one deserves to be raped.»

Ms Maseko’s account has since been removed from Instagram following her death.

On 30 July, the student reported her rape which allegedly took place in May. 

Ms Maseko’s parents were made aware of the allegations, and university staff agreed the student should be taken home while authorities carried out investigations.

She committed suicide just three days before she was due to return back to university and meet those investigating into her case.

University staff are now working with South Africa’s police and the National Prosecuting Authority to launch an inquest into Ms Maseko’s death.

The man accused of the rape has now been suspended from the university, but his identity remains unknown.

south africa rape Khensani Maseko suicide sexual assault violence

Rhodes University Vice-Chancellor Dr. Sizwe Mabizela said in a statement on Monday: «The tragic passing of Ms Maseko will not mark an end to the investigation into the circumstances leading up to her passing.»

She added: «We hope that this tragic incident will allow the University an opportunity to reflect and to engage, even deeper, on how we must pull together as a University and society to eliminate the scourge of gender-based violence once and for all. 

«This is the most fitting and lasting tribute we can give Khensani.»

South Africa has one of the highest rape rates per capita in the world.

south africa rape Khensani Maseko suicide sexual assault violence rhodes

south africa rape Khensani Maseko suicide sexual assault violence rhodes

Between 2016 and 2017, 138 out of ever 100,000 women in South Africa were victims of rape, according to national estimates released in June.

In contrast, Switzerland reported 6.4 cases of rape per 100,000 women in 2015. 

The report read: «This figure is among the highest in the world. For this reason, some have labeled South Africa the ‘rape capital of the world’.»

Just last week, thousands of women took to the streets to protest against gender-based violence in South Africa.

south africa rape Khensani Maseko suicide sexual assault violence rhodes

The TotalShutDown protest was held for South African women to take a united stand against the «ongoing war on their bodies», Loyiso Saliso, a spokeswoman for the movement said.

She added: «August is the woman’s [month] but women in this country are not happy. We have nothing to feel, we have nothing to celebrate. 

«The issue of gender-based violence has only been getting worse rather than better and that is very visible in our statistics as well.»

If you are affected by this story please contact Samaritans on 116 123.

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