Justice system fails two GBV victims
Cape Town – Two gender-based violence (GBV) survivors have expressed their frustration at the justice system after it took kidnapping and repeated assault for one to see her alleged perpetrator behind bars, while another was allegedly not informed her case had been withdrawn in court.
Khayelitsha resident Gcineka Mseka, who fears for her life, claims police officers from Site B police station in Khayelitsha have failed to protect her from her former boyfriend, who allegedly breached a restraining order numerous times.
In a recent incident in which the ex was arrested with his brother, Mseka, 32, was kidnapped and allegedly held hostage in a shack in Worcester.
“I was walking back home after buying airtime at a nearby petrol station when three men accosted me and dragged me to a car where they shoved me into the boot. I was kicking and screaming for help.
“I think the few people who were standing at a bus station were scared to come and assist. The car drove for more than an hour. I had stopped even crying by then and they played the music loud so that other road users could hear me banging on the boot,” said Mseka.
She recalled being pulled out of the vehicle and saw a fourth man.
“I had to sleep in between two men I didn’t know. In the middle of the night one kept on touching my thighs and private part. I had to beg him at one stage as he wanted to rape me, I promised to have sexual intercourse with him the following night.”
According to Mseka, she spent the following day locked up in the shack.
She said when the men were drunk, she had a chance to go to the bedroom and escape through a window.
“I stopped a minibus taxi and asked for help. The driver told me I was actually in Zwelethemba in Worcester and he took me to the police station where I got help. Ever since I broke up ... he has been harassing and assaulting me non-stop.
“This the sixth case against him; all Site B police do is arrest him for a day or week and then release him. I am so scared I really don’t know what to do any more,” said Mseka.
Police spokesperson FC Van Wyk said Mseka’s cases were transferred to the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences unit for further investigation.
The suspects were expected to appear in the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s Court today.
Last month, the man was arrested for a day after he allegedly went to Mseka’s house, robbed her of her phone and stabbed her with a broken glass for refusing to drop past charges.
Meanwhile, a domestic violence case against DA Ward 3 councillor Damon Mintoor from the Drakenstein Municipality was withdrawn by the State on Friday.
Mintoor appeared briefly at the Paarl Regional Court on allegations that he assaulted his common-law wife.
This emerged after she spoke out to the Concerned Drakenstein Residents (CDR) group requesting assistance.
CDR member Wentley September said: “She finally made a decision to speak out after he assaulted her in front of her children. According to the mother of three, the abuse has not only been physical over the years but also emotionally. She has a J88 to prove that she was hurt.”
September said yesterday the whole community was shocked by the latest developments and a meeting will be held today to get more information.
Mintoor’s wife, who asked not to be named, said: “It is wrong that no one informed me about this (case being withdrawn). I am very upset. I will find out tomorrow what actually happened because I have not withdrawn the charges with police.”
Mintoor would only say: “Cannot say anything at this stage however I feel very bad about what happened, and there’s a lot of things that have been said that are not right,” before referring questions to the municipality.
Council Speaker Aidan Stowman said due to the withdrawal of the charges there was no need for any further investigation.
“We are glad that this matter has been dealt with by the courts and that the councillor can now continue doing his work in his ward.”
National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said they would respond in due course.