Vhembe domestic abuse in the spotlight
THE family of a young woman allegedly murdered by her boyfriend of only a few months believe the police have failed them and their lives are now also in danger.
Portia Rasilavhi, 35, of Nzhelele Village outside Louis Trichardt was brutally killed a month ago – allegedly by her boyfriend of five months. Her body was discovered inside the suspect’s house in Nzhelele.
Her mother, Joyce, said they believe the man might also attack them.
“The police are not doing enough to arrest him. I fear that he might come after us as he is still on the run. There have been reports of him being spotted in our village,” she said.
“It has been hard trying to console her daughter since we learnt about the murder. What hurts the most is that Portia was a single parent, and now her daughter must grow up without both parents.
“I have not slept in weeks. How do I sleep knowing that the person who killed my daughter is still out there on the streets and the police are saying and doing nothing?” she asked.
Four women have been killed in the Vhembe region in recent months – all allegedly by their boyfriends. The killings prompted a group of women to go to the Vhembe District Offices and hand over a memorandum of their grievances to the executive mayor.
Their demands included that the office initiate a structured moral regeneration programme that would run in schools and community structures and a call for the police be held to account for all pending cases of women and child abuse in the area.
Reading out the memorandum at the march, domestic violence survivor Rinae Sengani encouraged abused women to speak up and walk away before they get killed.
“Our march here is to inspire hope and to let young girls know they don’t need to suffer in silence anymore. We’re saying speak up and walk away,” said Sengani.
“There are many women who are still afraid to talk because they are heavily dependent on their male monsters for daily survival. This call, therefore, also reaches beyond abuse. It is asking for women to be empowered through education and sustainable jobs.”
Limpopo police spokesperson Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said more resources had been assigned to the Rasilavhi murder case in a push to apprehend the suspect. – Health-e News