China / Hot Issues

College sacks prof over sex harassment claims

By Sun Li and Hu Meidong in Fuzhou (China Daily) Updated: 2014-10-15 08:08

Xiamen University authorities fired a professor who faces multiple accusations of sexually harassing and having sex with female students, saying on Tuesday that "the behavior of the professor has been verified".

Wu Chunming also was expelled from the Party, and his teaching credentials were revoked, according to an announcement on the University's Sina Weibo micro blog.

The announcement came a day after new allegations of sexual harassment against Wu aired on a television program.

In a Dragon TV program on Monday night, a blogger using the Internet moniker "Youth Caravan", who alleged in an online post on July 10 that history professor Wu Chunming had enticed female students into having sex with him, told the host by phone that Wu coerced her three times into sleeping with him at a hotel.

Youth Caravan's post is said to support another blogger, "Ting Yang", who earlier accused the professor of harassment in an online post.

On the show, Youth Caravan said that Wu once took out a condom in his office and wanted to have sex with her. She refused and was bruised on her arms while fighting off his advances.

The blogger said she often rebuffed Wu, and he would then publicly scold her, "crushing" her confidence.

On July 12, Xiamen University announced a special team had been set up to investigate the allegations. During the investigation, Wu was prohibited from teaching, enrolling and advising students.

Youth Caravan said on the show: "It's been three months and no result has been made public about the investigation. I'm very dissatisfied with it".

During the program, Li Ying, director of the Yuanzhong Gender Development Center and the attorney representing Youth Caravan and Ti Yang, presented alleged harassing cellphone text messages from the professor to a woman using the pseudonym "Lu Xifa".

One message, allegedly in response to Lu's uncooperative attitude, reads: "Fine, I won't harass you anymore. Since you don't accept me, now you have become an 'ordinary' student of mine, as you wish".

Li said, "The professor took advantage of his authority to impede the further study and graduation of students who wouldn't comply with him," Li said.

"I hope the university learns from this case and makes rules to prevent sexual harassment."

After cases of unethical behavior by university teachers have popped up in recent years, the Ministry of Education issued regulations on Oct 9 prohibiting university teachers from such activities as plagiarism, taking gifts or money from students and parents, and sexually harassing students or coercing them into having sex.

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