The civil rights organisation Action Society calls on SA’s government to amend the Sexual Offences Act, allowing the names of 42 289-convicted rapists to be added to the National Register for Sex Offenders (NRSO). Currently only the names of convicted sexual offenders against children or mentally disabled persons are placed on the list.
According to the latest annual crime statistics presented in Parliament last week, rape cases have increased by 1.7% from the previous year. The year on year increase of crimes against women shows that government lacks the will to enforce safety and security in South Africa.
“This week we will be celebrating Women’s Day. Some women will receive flowers and praises, but thousands will receive bruises and abuse. Talking about this problem does not help. We need to take drastic action to prevent the rape of another 42 000 women in the coming year,” says Daleen Gouws, spokesperson of the Action Society.
Action Society is driven by a purpose to provide a voice for the voiceless and deconstruct the harsh realities we face daily. They are urging the public to sign their petition (https://www.actionsociety.co.za/national-register) to make the NRSO publicly available.
The NRSO, which was implemented in 2009 in an effort to curb the prevalence of sexual offences in SA, is kept confidential and not open to the general public. As a result numerous offenders still have access to vulnerable people in our society.
“If the South African government is genuinely concerned about the wellbeing of our women and gender based violence (GBV), the Sexual Offences Act should be amended to include the names of convicted rape perpetrators and the public should have access to this list before another life is destroyed. This will encourage transparency in our communities and help to safeguard our women,” says Gouws.
ISSUED BY: Action Society
DATE: 4 August 2020
FOR MEDIA ENQUIRIES:
Spokesperson: Action Society,