Male rape increasing

2011-06-03 00:00

AFTER a 10-year-old boy claimed he was raped by a 14-year-old teenager at the hostel of a Port Shepstone school in March, police in the town report that an average of five male rapes are reported every week.

The disclosure comes as South Africa is observing Child Protection Week.

The victim alleged he was asleep one night when the accused entered his room, climbed into his bed, pulled down his pants and raped him.

In early May the Port Shepstone Regional Court was told the accused had been raped in the past.

Interviews with other pupils at the school established that no other rapes have taken place.

The case will be heard again on July 13.

A legal expert, who wants to remain anonymous, said the case will be dealt with in terms of the Child Justice Act.

Statistics show that the Port Shepstone Regional Court has more than 100 cases on its roll that deal with sexual assault or rape.

“In 60% of the incidents the perpetrator is known to the victim. In some cases the victims keep quiet because they are threatened by the perpetrator,” says the expert.

In cases that involve relatives, some mothers decide not to report the violations to the police because the perpetrator is the breadwinner.

The South African Police Force has a special team dedicated to dealing with such crimes. The Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit (FCS) investigates all incidents pertaining to family violence, child protection and sexual offences.

Says Port Shepstone police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Zandra Wiid, “Male rape is becoming more common and there’s an average of five reports per week where males are victims of rape.”

Wiid says the child is taken to a place of safety in cases where the perpetrator is not arrested.

“Section 54 of the Sexual Offences Act 32 of 2007 stipulates that any person who has knowledge of a sexual offence against a child must report such knowledge immediately to the police. The person is not obliged to give evidence in court in terms of Section 202 of the Criminal Procedure Act,” she says.

A team of dedicated medical professionals based at the Thuthuzela Crisis Centre at Port Shepstone Provincial Hospital say they deal with 40 to 60 cases of sexual assault or rape every month.

Dr Gerald Bauldry, of the centre, advises people to report rape incidents within 72 hours.

He says there may be a chance of the victim contracting HIV, so he or she would need to be given anti-retroviral treatment and counselling.

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