Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) applauds Minister Jeff Radebe and the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development for re-introduction of 22 Sexual Offences Courts.
According to the CGE Chairperson, Mr Mfanozelwe Shozi "The Sexual Offences Courts will go a long way in providing much needed protection to a large number of boys, girls, men and women including LGBTI people, who are both victims and survivors of sexual crimes."
This will inevitably ensure that issues of rape, sexual harassment, and other related sexual crimes are addressed by specialised courts, henceforth people with specialised skills in helping society eradicating the scourge of sexual crimes.
The CGE notes the successful introduction of special courts during the 2010 FIFA World Cup to ensure fast-tracking of prosecution of offences and ensure that criminals were brought to book.
We wish to see the same commitment and response demonstrated by the justice system to end the current apparent impunity of sexual offenders, aggravated delays in court proceedings and inadequate conviction and sentencing rates currently witnessed, all of which serve to further victimise survivors of sexual violence and deny them access to justice. As the CGE, we will monitor their effectiveness of the courts and also ensure the roll-out of all the courts throughout the country is done, as promised.
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Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality
7 Aug 2013