Johannesburg - Those responsible for the gang rape and murder of teenager Anene Booysen must rot in jail, the department of women, children, and people with disabilities said on Friday.
“The department... has urged the courts to ensure that those responsible for the brutal rape 1/8and 3/8 murder of Anene Booysen rot in jail,” spokesman Cornelius Tanana Monama said in a statement.
He urged people to work with law enforcement to stop gender-based violence.
“The high levels of women and children abuse in our country is a matter of grave concern and a painful reminder of the disregard for human life and human dignity.”
Booysen, 17, was found gang raped and mutilated at a construction site in Bredasdorp, in the Western Cape, on Saturday morning. She died in hospital that night.
Three men have been arrested in connection with the crime.
“When we know that someone is being abused in our own home or in our neighbour’s house, we have a duty to report it... Don't look away. Act against abuse,” Monama said.
Earlier, the DA and Cosatu said they would take part in marches against rape in Bredasdorp.
Democratic Alliance spokeswoman Liza Albrecht said in a statement the party would join a march by local residents on Friday afternoon. She said the DA would make sure police and the courts prosecuted the perpetrators speedily.
Congress of SA Trade Unions provincial secretary Tony Ehrenreich said a rally against rape would take place in Bredasdorp after Booysen's memorial service on Sunday.
“Cosatu believes that this event is bigger than party politics and all organisations and individuals are welcome to attend.”
The rally would begin at the Nelson Mandela Hall and end at the Bredasdorp police station, where a memorandum would be handed over.
“We need to pour out our grief and pain at this event in a matter that ensures that there is no repeat of this abuse of women,” Ehrenreich said.
Also on Friday, United Democratic Front Women's Organisation secretary general Thandi Nontenja condemned the attack.
The violent nature of Booysen's ordeal had brought sexual violence to the public's attention.
“But there are thousands of victims who we never hear about and, far too often, slip between the cracks of the justice system,” she said in a statement.
“One would think that with a female police commissioner sexual offences would be higher on the South African Police Service's list of priorities,” Nontenja said. - Sapa