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13 Dec 2009 07:52
The Department of Justice and the Department of Women, Children and People with Disabilities are not doing enough to punish those who rape, murder and assault women, the Democratic Alliance said on Saturday.
DA leader Helen Zille criticised the two departments while speaking at the Liverpool Secondary School in Actionville, Johannesburg, as part of the 16 Days of Activism Against Women and Child Abuse.
“I hope that the decision to establish this new ministry [of women, children and people with disabilities] wasn’t just window-dressing,” she said.
“I hope that it was born out of a serious commitment to take the rights of women and children seriously.
And I hope that it will have a material impact on the lives of women and children 365 days a year,” Zille said.
She added that on the other hand the justice system was not doing enough to deter criminals.
“Our criminal justice system does nothing to deter those who commit crimes against women and children.
“They do so without fear of being caught, prosecuted and convicted,” Zille said.
She added that less than 10% of rape cases opened resulted in convictions, while there was no guarantee that convicted rapists will stay behind bars.
“Take the case of serial rapist Ananias Mathe who was sent to jail again this week. He was convicted of multiple counts of rape, but escaped from prison twice to rape again.”
“This government makes all the right noises about the rights of women and children, but when it comes to action, little is done,” Zille said.—Sapa
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