Rapists don’t drop from the sky - MEC

2012-04-18 23:01
Cape Town - Gauteng Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko on Wednesday called on parents - especially those with sons - to teach their children to respect themselves as well as others, after the gang rape of a 17-year old Soweto girl, which was recorded on a cellphone.

The video, more than 10 minutes long, of the teenager being raped by at least seven men, went "viral" and became one of the main topics trending on the social networking site Twitter.

The rape was apparently filmed last week.

"Rapists don’t drop from the sky. Somebody rears them and they stay in our communties," Mazibuko said.

Mazibuko was speaking during a visit to the girl's mother.

The girl, who was reported missing in late March, was found in a man's house in Bramfischerville just before noon on Wednesday.

It appeared she had been kept there against her will. The man allegedly told the police she was his girlfriend and that she had said to him that  she was 19 years old.

The man was arrested for abducting the girl, and could also be charged with rape. This brings to eight the number of people arrested for attacking the girl.

Depraved

The African National Congress Women's League, which had helped search for the girl, said it was outraged, angered and disgusted at the crime.

The rapists were "depraved", and some of them were "old enough to be called men" but did not deserve the dignity associated with the ideal of manhood, spokesperson Troy Martens said.

Martens said parents should take responsibility for their children and instil in them - boys in particular - morality and respect for women.

She applauded the woman who found the video on her child's cellphone and went to the police.

"We would like to commend the swift action taken by police in arresting the culprits and [their] dedication to finding the missing girl."

The National Education Health and Allied Workers' Union condemned the crime as "barbaric" and said South Africans should be concerned about the prevailing high levels of women abuse.

"The patriarchal attitudes that still exist need all role-players in our societies to work together to educate and agitate for a change in attitudes from males of all ages," spokesperson Sizwe Pamla said in a statement.

Proudly South African said it was launching a school roadshow to raise awareness about sexual abuse. It would begin in Soweto.

Chief executive Leslie Sedibe condemned those who watched and distributed the video of the rape.

"What have we become when children rape children and we as fellow South Africans stand by and watch something so evil, cruel, callous and inhumane? Even watching such a video after the fact is atrocious and abominable."

Minister for women and children Lulu Xingwana condemned the rape and the spread of the video, which local media said was circulating mainly among teenagers in Johannesburg's Soweto township.

"In addition to the painful ordeal of rape the young woman was forced to endure, she is now subjected to a second assault on her dignity," Xingwana said in a statement.

National Youth Development Agency chairperson Andile Lungisa said the government and non-governmental organisations needed to work together to root out violence against women and children.

"It is beyond human comprehension what would [motivate] any human being to engage in such an inhumane act of violence, damaging the dignity of another human being in this manner."

If those arrested were found guilty of raping the teenager, the law should "have no mercy" on them, he said.

The suspects are expected to appear in the Roodepoort Magistrate's Court on Thursday.
- News24
Read more on:    lulu xingwana  |  soweto  |  johannesburg  |  soweto rape video  |  child abuse
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