Skeem Saam actress Lerato Marabe, who plays Pretty on the beloved soapie recently opened up about her past experience with sexual harassment.
She mentioned it in an interview with Mo Flava and Khutso Theledi on Metro FM during a conversation about how life experience helps actors bring certain storylines to life.
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Sexual harassment or ‘molestation’?
“With Pretty, it’s very easy because we’re the same age so we’re going through life at the same time.”
“A lot of the time, you go through the same things at the same time. Especially with the sexual harassment story, I have also went through the very same thing…” she began.
This section of the interview has since been misconstrued and reported on as though the actress was molested and/or assaulted. This differs from what she said which was that she had experienced sexual harassment.
The definition of molestation refers to the sexual assault or abuse of a person, especially a woman or a child. Colloquially, it is often used to refer to the sexual abuse or assault of young children.
Sexual assault is defined as an act in which one intentionally sexually touches another person without that person’s consent, or coerces or physically forces a person to engage in a sexual act against their will.
According to a Wikipedia entry on the topic, “It is a form of sexual violence, which includes child sexual abuse, groping, rape (forced vaginal, anal, or oral penetration or a drug-facilitated sexual assault), or the torture of the person in a sexual manner.”
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According to Labour Guide, sexual harassment is “where any form of unwanted verbal, nonverbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature occurs, with the purpose or effect of violating the dignity of a person, in particular when creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment”.
Based on the above-outlined definitions, the actress was very clear about what she had experienced which can not and should not be confused with molestation.
Cedric makes Skeem Saam a comfortable work environment
On the other hand, she praised her co-star, Cedric Fourie who lays Lehasa on Skeem Saam for how he approaches the intimate scenes they have to film as on-screen lovers.
Lerato said Cedric always makes sure to check that she is comfortable with what they are doing when filming and he always makes sure to ask for her input as to how things should go when they have to film intimate scenes on camera.
She also hailed the rest of the cast and crew, whom she considers family after all this time they have spent together working on the show.
Is Lerato Marabe married?
She concluded the interview by clearing the misconception that she is married by explaining that there was a traditional ceremony at her parent’s home and it rained on that day.
She then wore her late grandmother’s blanket to cover up and keep warm and said that she often did this as a way to remember her grandmother.
Lerato posted an image of herself wearing the blanket which many confused for the outfit most women wear during their lobola ceremonies.
“Big, big lies,” she said when asked whether or not she was married. She did, however, confirm that she is in a relationship.