South Africa: Police, NPA to Revisit GBV Cold Cases

10 September 2019

Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula says a committee has been set up to revisit cold cases relating to sexual offences and gender-based violence.

She said this when she chaired a briefing of the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Cluster at the Imbizo Media Centre in Cape Town on Tuesday.

This comes after President Cyril Ramaphosa made a call for gender-based violence cold cases to be reinvestigated.

"With regards to gender-based violence, the JCPS Cluster has responded to the President's call for action in the following manner: a committee will be set up by the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the National Prosecution Authority (NPA) to look at all cold cases which relate to sexual offences and gender-based violence," Mapisa-Nqakula said.

The setting up of the committee follows public uproar over the number of girls and women who have been raped and murdered, and those who have gone missing.

Mapisa-Nqakula said SAPS has committed to training more women police officers to deal with victims of crime against women and children at station level.

"This will go a long way in ensuring that victims are not subjected to secondary victimisation."

She said the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster has noted the high level of sexual offences at Institutions of Higher Learning.

"To address this matter, the Minister of Police (Bheki Cele) has been tasked to convene all Vice Chancellors to reassess campus security.

"Furthermore, victim support and services will be strengthened. The NPA and SAPS have been instructed to review and update the anti-rape and sexual gender based violence policy."

Mapisa-Nqakula said to date, government has in place 92 sexual offences courts and the construction of a further 11 will be finalised by the end of this financial year, with one opening this weekend in Limpopo.

"This will ensure that matters which relate to sexual offences are dealt with speedily by the justice system," the Minister said, adding that laws will be reviewed to ensure parole is not granted for people who are convicted.

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