Budget 2022 ̶ Finance Minister ignoring plight of GBVF victims

“Following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s SONA 2022 speech last week, the South African public remains uncertain on the combat of numerous socio-economic issues; in particular the fight against gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF). Ramaphosa once again provided lip service to victims of  GBVF with some reference to legislation and little about actual progress or future plans,” said Kelly Baloyi spokesperson of Action Society.

Finance Minister, Enoch Godongwana, failed to indicate the resource capacity created to build a bridge between the South African criminal justice system, private institutions and communities in combatting GBVF. Resources need to be allocated for preventative measures and not only for reactionary campaigns.

From October 2020 to September 2021, over 41 000 rape cases were reported,

amounting to 153 rapes per day.  Between July and September 2021, 9 556 people, most of whom were women, were raped. This is a 7% increase from the previous reporting period. Of the nearly 73 000 assault cases reported during this period, more than 13 000 were domestic violence-related.

“Government alone will not be able to combat GBVF, this fight requires the manpower of both communities and the private sector. It is the responsibility of the Finance Minister to coordinate this process,” says Baloyi.

Action Society hoped the minister would have focused his attention on the following:

(1) Providing resources for communities to partake in legislative processes within the criminal justice system regarding GBVF. This could mean that Community Policing Forums could assist in public participation processes, for communities to add value.

(2) Providing resources for cooperative initiatives, where Public Private Partnerships can serve as catalysts to fight GBVF. They can, for example, strengthen self-defense training capacity for women.

(3) Resources for the implementation of reservists trained in handling GBVF cases. These additional SAPS reservists would give communities statutory power to combat GBVF within in the framework of the law and assist permanent SAPS members in their duty to safeguard communities.

“The implementation of reservists will allow communities to be involved in combatting GBVF without being limited by SAPS resources shortage, it is an affordable force multiplier.”

“Having said that,  Action Society welcomes the additional R8.7 billion budget increase for SAPS allocated to employ an additional 12 000 entry-level constables,” concludes Baloyi.

 

ISSUED BY: Action Society

DATE:  23 February 2022

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