17 March 2017
The Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Cluster welcomes the Gauteng High Court’s land marking ruling in the case against Eke Ugochukwu. He was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment on charges of trafficking a 15-year-old girl and forcing her into prostitution in Rosettenville two years ago.
The precedent setting case is the first conviction in Gauteng in terms of section 4(1) of the Prevention and Combating of Trafficking in Persons Act 7 of 2013 which came into effect in August 2015. The law deals comprehensively with human trafficking in all its various forms and it provides for the protection of and assistance to victims of trafficking.
Siphiwe Dlamini, chair of the JCPS communication cluster, said: “Government remains committed to ensuring that all South Africans are and feel safe. This atrocious behaviour will not be tolerated in South Africa. The wheels of justice have turned in this case and the JCPS Cluster continues to echo the call for 2017 to be the year of unity in action by all South Africans as together we move South Africa forward. Through various pieces of legislations and policies, government is committed to ensuring the safety of children, however it is also imperative that parents and society be cognisant of the roles that they need to play in protecting children and in exposing any suspected child abuse activities or child exploitation.”
Trafficking in Persons, defined as a modern-day form of slavery, is a global problem and to this end the country’s blueprint, the National Development Plan makes provision for building safer communities.
Government encourages communities to work with law enforcement officers to report any criminal activities. “Government calls on members of the public to partner with government in creating a safer and healthier environment for our communities to thrive. By working together we move South Africa,” added Siphiwe.
Members of the public can call the gender based violence toll free number 0800 428 428 to speak to a social worker for assistance and counselling.
Cell: 082 378 6199
Issued by Government Communication and Information System (GCIS)