Hor­rific crimes in spotlight

Lev­els of vi­o­lence must be ad­dressed, min­is­ters say

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - TE­BOGO MONAMA

THE ANC’s peace and sta­bil­ity sub­com­mit­tee says it is con­cerned with the cal­lous way women and chil­dren are be­ing mur­dered.

Brief­ing the me­dia ahead of the party’s pol­icy con­fer­ence at the end of the month, com­mit­tee chair­per­son and Min­is­ter of De­fence and Mil­i­tary Veter­ans No­siviwe Mapisa-Nqakula de­scribed South Africa as an an­gry so­ci­ety.

She also lamented the re­cent spate of rapes and killings of women, but said the fact that the victims were will­ing to open cases with the po­lice meant they have hope in the jus­tice sys­tem.

Mapisa-Nqakula said: “There should not be a siege men­tal­ity. We should not feel like noth­ing has been done in terms of leg­is­la­tion. There is all the leg­is­la­tion in South Africa that pro­vides for the pro­tec­tion of women and chil­dren.

“We be­lieve the rea­son women are com­ing for­ward is be­cause South African women know their rights; they are em­pow­ered; and they un­der­stand that it is the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the state to pro­tect them.

“What we should be wor­ried about is the grue­some na­ture of the crimes be­ing com­mit­ted. We have not seen this sort of thing. This is some­thing we have to en­gage on… The psy­che of South Africans… We should be look­ing at post-1994, when in­tro­duc­ing democ­racy and what sys­tems we put in place to deal with is­sues of anger.

“Just an or­di­nary protest march turns into anger and in the process women, chil­dren and young peo­ple are caught up in that anger. If you say to me ‘we have be­come a vi­o­lent’ so­ci­ety, I will say yes. “If a young man is go­ing to rape a woman, he kills her and burns her be­yond recog­ni­tion. There must be some­thing wrong with that. If a man is go­ing to rape a baby and kill her, then there is some­thing wrong with that. We should be talk­ing about South Africans and ask­ing: ‘Are we an an­gry na­tion’?”

Jus­tice and Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices Min­is­ter Michael Ma­sutha said more em­pha­sis should be placed on look­ing into un­der­ly­ing drivers that lead men to abuse women.

“From go­ing through pa­role ap­pli­ca­tions, the kind of per­son who wants to be re­leased ranges from peo­ple who were mo­ti­vated by su­per­sti­tion, poor gen­der re­la­tions to out­right vi­cious­ness. We need a mul­ti­pronged strat­egy to ad­dress this,” Ma­sutha said.

Yes, we have be­come a vi­o­lent so­ci­ety

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