SOUTH Africa needs more courts dedicated to processing sexual crimes.
Rape Justice in South Africa, a 2017 report by the Medical Research Council on behalf of the National Prosecuting Authority, showed that only 8% of reported rapes result in convictions.
2016/17 Crime Statistics, published by the South African Police Service, showed 49 960 reported sexual offences.
Yet, according to the Rape Crisis Cape Town Trust, as few as one in nine survivors of sexual offences report the crimes to officials because of reporting barriers.
This includes a lack of faith in the criminal justice system.
That puts the estimated number of sexual offences closer to 450 000.
Kathleen Dey from the Rape Crisis Cape Town Trust said the answer to this problem is for government to create more specialised sexual offences courts.
“South Africa has 75 specialised sex offences courts that support rape survivors, increase conviction rates and decreasing the time it takes to process the cases.
“Government must increase the number of specialised sex offences courts in the country.”
Rape Crisis Cape Town Trust is an advocacy group of the Rape Survivors’ Justice Campaign. It focuses on increasing and improving sexual offences courts.
“The aim is to improve convictions and reduce survivor trauma.
“The Rape Survivors’ Justice Campaign holds government to its promise to roll out 10 new sexual offences courts a year over the next three years, across South Africa.”
For more information visit www.for-women.co.za