South Africa: Gauteng Legislature On Cases of Gender-Based Violence

press release

The Gauteng Provincial Legislature's (GPL) Portfolio Committee on Community Safety has commended the Gauteng's Community Safety Department for successful convictions made in some reported cases of gender-based violence.

This was detailed in the Committee's oversight report on the Department's 2018/19 Annual Report tabled before the Legislature's Sitting today.

Though the Committee noted significant progress in the convictions of perpetrators of gender-based violence, it further expressed concerns on the continuous increase of crimes committed against women and children. The Committee called on the Department to employ a multifaceted approach to address the underlying causes to help minimise this scourge.

Successful convictions include the following:

The court found Lebogang Mokoena guilty on 43 counts: 13 rape, 9 kidnapping, 9 pointing of a firearm, 2 aiding and forcing another person to commit a sexual offence on another person, this resulted in 340 years and 13 life sentences in the Quantum rape case.

The convicted serial rapist, Lebogang Mokoena was sentenced to additional life sentence plus 35 years for kidnapping, rape, robbery with aggravating circumstances in Rooderpoort Magistrate Court.

The sexual violation of a 7-year-old girl in the toilets of the Dros restaurant. Ikhaya Lethemba offered full psychosocial support as per the needs of the child victim, the mother and family.

The murder of 7 family members in Vlakfontein which sent a shock wave throughout the whole country. Ikhaya Lethemba offered psychosocial interventions to the family and continued court support as the matter is still in the court process.

The Johannesburg High Court found the suspect Chauke Shadrack Xidada guilty. He was responsible for the criminal spree of serial rape cases on 60 charges, including 24 rape, 2 attempted rape, 5 assault, 13 robberies, 8 housebreakings, 5 kidnapping and 2 attempted murder. On 15 May 2018, he was sentenced to 23 life sentences and 245 years imprisonment.

The perpetrator in Kgothatso Paele's case was sentenced to 8 years imprisonment at the Johannesburg High Court. She was referred to Ikhaya Lethemba by the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit (FCS) to receive counselling after the rape ordeal. The client was also provided with psychosocial support, court support, court preparation, case tracking and post court debriefing.

The Committee noted the report that the Department had provided support to victims of gender-based violence by setting up victim friendly rooms and encouraging reporting of gender-based violence cases in communities and at institutions of higher learning.

The Committee had however noted through an independent verification study that some police stations such as Ratanda, Vaal Marina and Bronkorspruit lacked suitable office space and furniture for their victim friendly rooms. The Committee recommended to the Department to ensure that these stations and all other stations make the necessary provision and suitable space for the Victim Empowerment Centres.

In its assessment of the financial performance of the Department for the financial under review, the Committee noted that a total of R738 million was spent, out of a budget appropriation of R752 million which was allocated for the financial year under review. This represents 98% expenditure of the Department's total allocation.

The Committee noted that the efforts of the Department in monitoring police performance in the province. The Department reported that all 142 police station were monitored through announced and unannounced oversight visits. The visits were aimed at monitoring the level of service delivery, resourcing of police stations, customer care, updating station profiles and the impact of population growth on policing. Although the Committee noted the report that improvements were made in some stations to reduce crime, the level of crime remains significantly high.

The Committee is also concerned about the under resourcing of police stations particularly with the shortage of vehicles and police officers. It was reported that the under resourcing has negatively affected adequate deployment of resources, taking into account the rapidly growing population in Gauteng.

Furthermore; the Committee considered the Gauteng South African Police Service (SAPS) Annual Performance report for the 2018/19 financial year. The Committee was concerned that only 67 targets were met out of a total of 116 targets, with 47 of the planned targets not being achieved.

The Committee requested that the SAPS submit plans intended to improve its performance on all the targets that were not achieved during the period under review. The Committee welcomed the report from the Gauteng Provincial Commissioner that the implementation of operation Okae Molao was to be intensified to achieve significant reduction crime. The Committee is confident that through the reinforcement of operation Okae Molao the anticipated reductions in crime will be achieved.

A detailed report on the Committee's assessment of the Department of Community Safety's Annual performance for the 2018/19 Financial Year is available on www.gpg.gov.za or upon request.

For interview requests with the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee please contact: Mr Thebe Khumalo on

011 498 5948 / 072 266 1021 email: TKhumalo@gpl.gov.za

Province:

Gauteng

Issued by: Gauteng Provincial Legislature

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