Launch of 16 Days campaign

2017-12-06 06:02
PHOTOS: Makhosandile zuluMzimba Primary pupils who debated about the pros and cons, or challenges, of reporting a sexual assault crime within three days.

PHOTOS: Makhosandile zuluMzimba Primary pupils who debated about the pros and cons, or challenges, of reporting a sexual assault crime within three days.

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INCEMA - an NPO, Plessislaer SAPS, the Department of Social Development (DSD), the Thuthuzela Care Centre at Edendale Hospital and Lifeline Pietermaritzburg launched the 16 Days of Activism For No Violence Against Women and Children campaign last Friday.

Mr T. Gwala from the DSD said it is important that families speak out and report gender-based violence, abuse and sexual assault.

He said most families do not do so because they fear the shame the family would have to deal with, adding that in some families traditional rites, like the slaughtering of a goat, are preferred to resolving a case such as the abuse of a girl child by an elder, over reporting the matter to the police.

Mzimba Primary debated on the pros and cons of victims reporting sexual assault to the police within three days of the incident.

A point raised by one group for reporting within three days - 72 hours - said the importance of doing so would ensure the victim gets
assistance from Thuthuzela Care Centre, which provides help for sexual assault victims, which includes building a case ready for prosecution. The counter-argument raised by the opposing group was that sexual assault victims, especially children, face a number of problems, including the fact that children need to be accompanied by an adult when going to the police to report the abuse and that adult could turn out to be the victimiser or a family member bent on ensuring the matter remains a secret.

The group said that children would need money to go to, or call the police, which they would get from the same adult.

They also argued that in some instances the abuser might be the breadwinner in the family, so should the matter be reported the victim’s family would have no one to provide for them.

Health screening services were provided at the campaign.

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