21 February 2013

South Africa: Sexual Offences Cases Could Be Placed On Special Court Roll

Photo: GCIS
A rally against rape and abuse in South Africa

Government is in talks with the judiciary to have sexual offences cases placed on a prioritised roll, says Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development, Jeff Radebe.

"I am in discussion with the judiciary to ensure that sexual offences cases are placed on a prioritised roll and that we strengthen the caseflow management system to ensure that the chain from investigation to trial stage is water-tight," said the minister.

The minister said the move came as incidents of rape and violence against women "are reaching alarming proportions".

"We are also considering measures to strengthen our legislative framework. These include aspects relating to bail, admission of evidence and sentencing of perpetrators of this heinous crime," said the minister.

Radebe was speaking during a debate on President Jacob Zuma's State of the Nation Address on Tuesday.

"We are moving steadfast to combat this barbaric conduct by merciless perpetrators who show no respect to the right of women to enjoy the freedom of their security. We have taken a conscious decision to re-establish Sexual Offences Courts to complement the work of the Sexual Offences Unit in the Police," he said.

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