THE brutal and calculated rape and murder on Monday of 19-year-old Uyinene Mrwetyana by a civil servant employed by the state has shocked the collective conscience of South Africans.A young girl was subjected to such barbaric and inhumane treatment and had her life cut short while performing a regular errand such as entering a Post Office.This is according to DA leader Mmusi Maimane who took a firm stand against the increasing number of young women whose lives were taken by cruelty and evil beyond comprehension. Just this past week, 14-year-old Janika Mallo was found dead in her grandmother’s back yard after being raped and murdered. And boxing champion Leighandre “Baby Lee” Jegels, was murdered by her boyfriend – a SAPS employee entrusted to protect citizens.“These young women were not the first victims of the violence against women that is so prevalent in our society. We’ve been exposed to similar tragedies,” said Maimane.“From Courtney Peters to Karabo Mokoena, from Valencia Farmer to Meghan Cremer. These are daughters of our nation who ought to be protected from harm, not preyed upon.“The sad reality is that unless swift action is taken, these young women won’t be the last victims of such crimes,” said Maimane. Official statistics show that last year alone, almost 40 000 people were raped in South Africa – the overwhelming majority being women. That’s 109 people raped per day, and those are only the victims who decide to report the crime.“We need urgent, clear and decisive action and we cannot wait a moment longer. This goes much further than putting the perpetrators of such heinous acts in jail. It requires addressing the root causes of this social and moral decay and bold leadership making hard, unpopular but effective decisions,” said Maimane.According to him, money must be redirected to establish a special task team to review the systems and processes of law enforcement officials and agencies, the SAPS, and the criminal justice system, with a focus on how to better predict and prevent violent crimes against women.In closing, he called on every church, mosque, synagogue – all religious leaders and South Africans of faith to continuously pray for the nation and its leadership.