by SAVIOUS KWINIKA
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has conceded South Africa is failing to curb the murder of children, rape of women and domestic violence.
A week before the launch of the annual 16 Days of Activism for “No Violence against Women and Children”, the latest crime statistics released by the South African Police Service (SAPS) show an increase in such crimes.
“If a nation’s character can be judged by how it treats women and children, then we are falling desperately short,” Ramaphosa stated in his weekly letter, released on Monday.
According to statistics released by Police Minister Bheki Cele last week, in three months, between July and September 2021, no less than 9 556 people, most of whom were women, were raped.
This is 7 percent more than in the previous reporting period.
Of the nearly 73 000 assault cases reported during this period, more than 13 000 were domestic violence-related.
The rate of child murders has climbed by nearly a third compared to the previous reporting period.
“These statistics are shameful,” Ramaphosa denounced.
“We are in the grip of a relentless war being waged on the bodies of women and children that, despite our best efforts, shows no signs of abating.”
The government has made some interventions to curb the crisis.
This includes the launch of the National Strategic Plan to Combat Gender-based Violence and Femicide (NSP) in 2020.
It comprises legislative reform, support to survivors through the provision of evidence kits at police stations and psycho-social services, the establishment of a Gender-Based Violence and Femicide Fund and supporting the network of Thuthuzela and Khuseleka Care Centres.
The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an annual international campaign that kicks off on November 25.
– CAJ News