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Oprah Faces Press in School Scandal

11/5/2007 10:37 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Oprah Winfrey just told the press that the recent abuse charges at her South Africa school has been "one of the most devastating, if not the most devastating experience, of my life."


The talk show queen just gave a live press conference, apologizing for the alleged sexual abuse at The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls, but O remained positive by saying, "No one can destroy the dream I have held, and each girl continues to hold, at the school."

A dorm matron at the Academy was suspended on October 17 and was later arrested on assault, indecent assault and soliciting under-age girls to perform indecent acts. The matron, Virginia Mokgobo, was released today on bail.

95 COMMENTS

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61.

ssdd    

In 1 minute 10 seconds she said:
The word "I" 6 times
The word "me" 1 time
The word "my" 1 time
The word "Oprah" 1 time.

Who is this about? Her or the girls?
She makes me sick.

2455 days ago
62.

numberoneangel1902    

Ya'll have to be kidding me...Your comments about Oprah suck....If any of you had any brains you wouldnt be bannging on other people...Don't you know that for every finger you point at another person, four are pointer back at yourself...Take a look at yourselvs...Your not saints....Your just people just like everybody else....So get a life....This is for all the synicle people out there....When things come back to you dont say I didnt warn you....because they will...even when you think there isnt any thing out there to phase you...This is for all the people who support Oprah and have a true love of life...a kind and compassionate heart...Your journy in this life will be rewarded in the end...Just remember life is a struggle no matter...but we must pust forward....Take care and God bless...Angel

2455 days ago
63.

Kate    

Why can't celebrities educate and adopt children from their own countries? As an educator I see hundreds of kids everyday who need a good role model, and someone to listen to them. It is a sad situation for those girls, but come on Oprah? What about kids here in America?

2455 days ago
64.

College Grad    

Some of the comments her are so stupid, I don't even know where to start. The point about Oprah's money is this...ITS HER MONEY! If she wants to go throw it in the ocean she can. And for those of you who are complaining that she should open a school in America, it schools on every corner in America, yet you have to have officers punish both the students and the parents to get them to even go to school. Then you have a country where children are begging to go to school. The same people complaining need to be aware of the people their voting into office, b/c the school system here is horrible. I know teachers who make basically nothing, don't have supplies, or even books to teach from. Yet you have the president giving money to other causes, congress getting raises every year, and money being thrown left and right and hardly any going to the American education system. And yes abuse happened it wasn't here fault. Even here in American we have teachers molesting and having sexual relationships with 12 and 13 year old students, so who are we to make judgements against people.

2455 days ago
65.

Joel Cairo    

She was shocked, SHOCKED...to find out the female matron of a girl's residential school was molesting the cute ones. Couldn't see that one coming.

2455 days ago
66.

somebody    

Oprah not perfect? What is this world coming to? Does anyone have a box of tissues?

2455 days ago
67.

TOMMY    

when you hire a woman who is clearly a lesbian don't be surprized that the little girls aren't safe.

2455 days ago
68.

calling it like i see it    

The bashing here is really pathetic. She has done a wonderful thing for these girls, she has given them an oppurtunity unheard of in Africa. It is a shame that an evil person has brought darkness over a beautiful gift. As for the idiots screaming lawsuit, calling Oprah a racist and Madame etc., get over yourself. She has given so much to people in need, regardless of race or sex. It sickens me that when a person does something good, there are evil people who can't wait for something bad to happen, so they can spew their idiotic words and hide behind a computer, while doing nothing themselves to make the world a better place. Stand proud Oprah, you are truly a gift to society and may we all learn from you what kindness and appreciation are all about. Keep up the good work, and by all means, PLEASE RUN FOR PRESIDENT!!!!!!!!!

2455 days ago
69.

R.Zimmerman    

Oh, she probably left instructions with the matron to pick the cutest ones.

2455 days ago
70.

Nica Gee    

Oprah has way too much sway with the general public in the US. So many sheep who think she can do no wrong. Well, it turns out she's not perfect and like it or not, she's wrapped up in this nasty business. Oprah doesn't have all the answers, nor can she cure all the injustice in the world. If she really wanted to get involved with this project, she should live and breathe it, not just throw money at it. Oprah says vote for this Academy Award nominee and voila, he or she gets the nod even though the performance is no better or worse than the others. Oprah says read this book and the sheep run out and buy it even when it's a MILLION LITTLE PIECES and turns out to be a fraud. Oprah says vote for Obama. God help us all if you do. Wake up and use your OWN BRAINS GOD GAVE YOU! Sheesh! The woman isn't perfect, has her OWN ISSUES - don't look too closely at her personal life - and has her own prejudices - which have been tape recorded. Wake up you silly sheep!! She should apologize and be sorry.

2455 days ago
71.

calling it like i see it    

OPRAH FOR PRESIDENT!!!!!!!!

2455 days ago
72.

Trace    

You people that ar bashing Oprah REALLY MAKE ME SICK!!!!!

This is NO DIFFERENT than what goes on at many American schools - public or private. Only difference is that it was QUICKLY RESOLVED vs. teachers HERE WHO SOMETIMES MARRY their STUDENTS!!!
..It's generating chatter because it is "Oprah's" school and many were against her opening a school in South Africa - when so many children here need a decent quality education - OH BUT THERE ARE SCHOOLS HERE IN AMERICA... The worst schools here are better than the schools there! Give it a rest - SHE DID WORK FOR HER MONEY - NOT YOU!

2455 days ago
73.

tmmsw    

agree with #10 comment. Oprah should have opened her school closer to home (perhaps, CHICAGO?) and been onsite, a presence. Like it or not, her school (with the celebs, and network promotion) has been forever sullied, incredibly sad. A bad day, event for Oprah? Think about being 12, leaving your family and cutting off communication, etc--to be sexually abused, verbally abused. Devastating indeed. Too much celebrity, no common sense. I hope that every student is rewarded financially from the O empire--in this case, Oprah put her own needs ahead of those children and their families.

2455 days ago
74.

Marlb Man    

Poor fat ass oprah!! Why does everybody seem to think she is so great? Seems like a real nasty bitch to me! She only opened that school for attention. Stupid C...!

2455 days ago
75.

Allred Tree    

This crybaby act on Oprah's part is sickening. This is ALL HER FAULT! She has set these girls up to be abused! WHY DID SHE IGNORE THE COMPLAINTS THAT BEGAN MONTHS AGO about the school being run like a prison? Why were the parents allowed such limited contact?

She is running an abuse academy and it will deteriorate before her very eyes just like apartment buildings run by SLUMLORDS! Giving the girls cellphones means nothing except she is doing a CYA routine and trying to keep this PR nightmare under the covers.

Why did she not want to open a school in Chicago? Why did she not want to have to abide by the rules of this country which has made this undeserving hedonist uber wealthy? Oprah is simply trying to one up Angelina Jolie and keep her name going forever just like she keeps only her self on the cover of her magazine each month. Oprah needs to move to Africa and live on the premises where she can personally supervise her dream. She could easily move her production studio there, creating jobs for the locals. Why, why, why folks doesn't she do this?

2455 days ago
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