22 February 2019

South Africa: SA Women Fear Using Public Transport Due to Violence and Intimidation


Several incidents have raised concern about the levels of safety women can expect while using public transport. Women worry about the risk of violence and intimidation, especially when they are travelling on their own.

About 56% of South Africans depend on public transport to get to work, their leisure activities and to visit family. And according to the Statistics South Africa Gender Patterns in Transport Report, 2013, females are more likely to use public transport.

For women, the use of public transport is most prevalent in KwaZulu-Natal (45.3%), Mpumalanga (42.8%), North West (42.5%) and Gauteng (41.8%), the report found. If recent cases are considered, women, especially those travelling alone, are increasingly vulnerable when using public transport.

In November 2018, taxi driver Lebogang Gift Mokoena was sentenced by the South Gauteng High Court sitting in Palm Ridge to 13 life sentences and 340 years in prison. Mokoena was responsible for robbing, kidnapping and raping a number of his female passengers. He also admitted to being part of a three-man gang which was responsible for raping a girl in front of her mother, reported the Sowetan. All of these events occurred between September 2016 and October 2017.

In August 2018, a woman...

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