GBV survivor docket found after Action Society press conference

It is with a small sense of justice that Action Society received the news that the missing docket of Gender Based Violence victim Janelle Laattoe has been found after being lost by senior members of the Delft SAPS.

Action Society was notified on 5 August 2022 that Laattoe’s docket has been miraculously found following a press conference last week Tuesday at the Philisa Abafazi Bethu centre.

At the press conference Laattoe told her story. She was physically assaulted by her boyfriend in 2018. After his alleged beatings Laattoe needed a plate inserted in her wrist and her teeth had to be replaced. He also tried to burn her with a soldering iron. 

In 2019 she made a case against him at the Delft SAPS in Cape Town. The matter was provisionally withdrawn in December 2021.

In January this year, Laattoe requested that the matter be put back on the court roll, it was also during this time when she reached out to Action Society, who took on the matter.

In the following weeks Action Society learnt her docket had gone missing.

“We’ve made at least 15 calls to the police station and conducted physical visits. It was only then confirmed that the docket is missing. Last week we heard that that the docket was found, and we are indeed satisfied. We will continue to assist and monitor the matter as with many others,” said Ian Cameron, the director of community safety at Action Society.

“We will not allow incompetence and corruption on senior level demotivate us to fight for victims of GBV. We are meeting with our legal team about going ahead with the IPID complaint against senior members who ‘lost’ the docket.”

Cameron also made it clear that Action Society will always assist and help SAPS where and how possible in the fight against GBV.

Tomorrow South Africa celebrates Women’s Day, however with the current state of affairs and the systems failing victims of GBV and femicide, there is no cause to celebrate.

Action Society has long been suggesting a range of solutions to crime in South Africa.

“We need to do a skills audit in the SAPS to determine the merit of appointments and sack members not appointed on merit,” explained Cameron.

“Polygraph all members; starting with the leadership to determine whether they have been involved in any corrupt activities. If so, sack them. Restore our country’s crime intelligence capabilities. Reinstating specialised units that can effectively deal with serious violent crime without living in the community where they work will be a huge step in the right direction.”

Cameron added that crime kingpins, including those with state connections, must be targeted and taken out of operation.

“Restore reservist capabilities, specifically to support specialised units. It is of utmost importance that these reservists do not come from the said communities for intimidation to be limited. Paying police members properly will go a long way to rectify the situation as well. Finally, implement police devolution in the Western Cape as a proof of concept.”

Is there justice in SA?

At Action Society, we often see delays in the justice system. What do you think? Have you experienced this too?

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Action Society will protect and save all relevant personal information as described in the applicable legislation and shall only use such personal information for the purpose stated herein. With completing the above form you agree and confirm that Action Society may contact you in future. We thank you for your support.