Gender Based Violence and Femicide is one of the biggest challenges currently facing the country, Cabinet said on Thursday.
This is according to Minister in the Presidency, Mondli Gungubele, who was briefing the media on the outcomes of the Cabinet meeting, held on Wednesday.
Cabinet expressed condolences to the families of Nosicelo Mtebeni, Palesa Maruping and Pheliswa “Dolly” Sawutana following their gruesome murders last month.
“These heinous crimes were committed during the commemoration of Women’s Month in August, which was the month to celebrate the strides we have made in bridging the gender inequalities in our society. These crimes have reminded all of us that GBVF remains the biggest challenge facing the country. It requires all of us to work harder to strengthen the protection of women.
“Cabinet has called on law-enforcement agencies to ensure justice is served for these women and their families,” Gungubele said at a media briefing.
Gungubele said that at least R21 billion has been allocated by government to implement the National Strategic Plan on Gender Based Violence and Femicide.
He added that the whole country also needs to intervene to fight the scourge.
“A number of interventions have been put in place to strengthen our criminal justice system. These include increasing dedicated regional courts to deal with sexual offences, strengthening our sexual offences laws and equipping our police officers with the requisite skills to deal effectively with such offences.
A number of government buildings have been converted to create more shelters for women in distress. Cabinet calls on all of us to join hands in creating a safe and secure environment for women in the country,” he said.
To obtain assistance and counselling on Gender Based Violence and Femicide (GBVF) matters, call the GBV Command Centre on 0800 428 428 (0800 GBV GBV).
Callers can also request a social worker from the Command Centre to contact them by dialling *120*7867# (free) from any cell phone.