28 March 2014
Government welcomes the sentencing of Thato Kutumela by the Pretoria High Court for the murder and rape of his five-month pregnant girlfriend, Zanele Khumalo in April 2011. Kutumela has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Acting GCIS CEO, Harold Maloka, said “This sentencing serves as a deterrent to other perpetrators and a clear demonstration that the wheels of justice in South Africa are continuously turning. Government will not tolerate violence against women and children and commends the judicial system and law enforcement agencies for its tireless efforts in ensuring that justice in this case is served.”
Government will continue to protect women and children’s constitutional rights, and has put in place systems such as the Constitution, supporting legislation specifically aimed at protecting women and children, and policies and programmes aimed at fighting crime in our country.
The most recent initiative of government is the launch of the Pilot Phase of the Command Centre on Gender-Based Violence, which forms part of the five-year Programme of Action Plan. The plan has been developed by the Inter-Ministerial Committee to investigate the root causes of Gender Based Violence. The Command Centre is aimed at providing immediate psychological assistance and referral to victims affected by gender-based violence and to assist them in avoiding additional exposure to violence.
“As South Africa celebrates its 20 Years of Freedom, let us recognise the constitutional rights of women and children, and be cognisant that gender-based violence is a criminal offence that has substantial impact on social cohesion and resilience of communities,” said Maloka.
Government alone cannot eradicate this scourge that threatens to destroy our communities. We call on all South Africans and sectors of our society to partner with government in creating a safer and healthier space for our communities to thrive,” Maloka said.
The 24-hour call centre is dedicated to provide support and counselling to victims of Gender-Based Violence. Victims of violence and abuse are encouraged to use the toll free number 0800 428 428 (0800 GBV GBV) to speak to a social worker for assistance and counseling. Callers can also request a social worker from the Command Centre to contact them by dialling *120*7867# (free) from a cell phone.
Contact: 082 847 9799
Issued by: Government Communications and Information System (GCIS)