A recovering drug addict in South Africa alleges he was sexually assaulted at a rehabilitation facility as punishment for being gay, IOL reports.
Mogamat Yushree Jacobs, 36, who immediately went to police after escaping from the Akhbar Rehabilitation Centre in Cape Town, also says he was beaten and covered with human feces.
Jacobs, who was addicted to heroin for 12 years, entered rehab about eight months ago and eventually assisted Akhbar administration as counselor. He claims that he was targeted for the abuse after befriending a new male client.
“We were having a one-on-one session and I was holding his hands when the manager came in,” Jacobs says. “We were told to end the friendship and people were assigned to watch me and this person.”
Jacobs, who was unaware that Akhbar employs corporal punishment, says administrators proceeded to beat him with a sjambok, or leather whip, leaving him badly bruised and unable to walk for several days.
“They took water filled with human waste and threw it onto me and ordered that I get into the pool with the other clients who were there,” Jacobs recalls. “The one who we called ‘the father of the house’ placed my head under the water and it felt like I was going to pass out.”
It was during this “night of torture” that Jacobs says he was sexually assaulted by two clients.
“Then they ordered me to get out and told the one client to stand behind me and to grind me with his penis,” Jacobs continues. “The other they said must shove his penis in my mouth. These men were forced to do it by the ‘father’.”
Covered in feces, Jacobs was allegedly ordered to stand without moving for eight hours while other clients verbally abused him.
“They then had clients shout at and insult me by saying things like I did not come to the rehab for drugs, but to do boys. The management knew I was gay when I arrived, and had no problem with it.”
Police confirm that they are currently investigating the rape charge. The suspect is known but no arrests have been made.
South Africa has one of the world’s highest rates of sexual assault, with “corrective rape” increasingly used in an attempt to make LGBT people straight.
While the country was the first in the world to constitutionally outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation, as well as the first in Africa to legalize same-sex marriage, LGBT South Africans often face violence and discrimination.