Unite against killing of women in SA – Zuma

President Jacob Zuma urged the public on Tuesday to unite in taking a stand against the recent killings and attacks of young women and children.

In a statement issued by the Presidency Zuma was in shock over the recent killings of young women, some of who were allegedly killed by their partners, as well as cases of human trafficking.

“We are outraged and seriously concerned about the reports of the abuse and killing of women and children in some parts of the country. We are especially extremely concerned that in most cases, these attacks occur in the hands of family members or in the case of women, their intimate partners”, said Zuma.

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He urged the public to work with law enforcement agencies and government entities in reporting these crimes.

“The nation must forge a united front with the law enforcement authorities, government and all sectors of society in fighting this appalling scourge and isolate these criminals in society but within the ambit of the law,” said Zuma.

He said that violence against women and children was a priority crime. Through the public reporting perpertrators to police, several criminals were caught and given harsh sentences.

Zuma urged victims of abuse to not fear or be intimidated by perpertrators, instead report them to police.

“Victims should not turn a blind eye to violence in their intimate relationships, at home, work or at school but should immediately report incidents to authorities before such abuse intensifies and leads to murder,” Zuma said.

He urged victims to contact the 24 hour gender based violence command centre hotline (0800 428 428), which is facilitated by the Social Development Department, where those abused can report any attacks.

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Zuma urged the public to come forward and assist authorities with information on missing girls who are kidnapped or go missing because of human trafficking.

“Human trafficking is modern day slavery. It is a gross violation of human rights and is a very serious crime and should be prevented at all costs. We call on community members who have information or any knowledge of such activities to report perpetrators to the police. Let us protect our girls. To date, government has enacted Combating of Trafficking in Persons Act, 2013 (Act No.7 of 2013), which is aimed at effecting international agreements which includes the Palermo Trafficking in Persons Protocol”.

Zuma promised that government would continue to create awareness and educate communities about the effects of human trafficking.

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Tshegofatso Ngobeni

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