Another woman murdered, Gauteng police look for boyfriend
Pretoria – The South African Police Service (SAPS) in Gauteng on Sunday are looking for the boyfriend of a 42-year-old woman whose body was found in an outside room in Eersterust, east of Pretoria, provincial SAPS spokesperson Captain Kay Makhubele said.
“Preliminary investigations revealed that this morning [Sunday] the [victim's] boyfriend asked for transport money from a family member, alleging that he had got a new job somewhere since he was unemployed,” Makhubele said.
“Detectives are appealing to Mr Clayton Andrews to urgently contact the local police station and assist in the investigation, since he is the one who happened to be the last person to be in contact with the deceased when she was still alive,” he said.
Gauteng police commissioner Lt-Gen Elias Mawela condemned the ongoing killings of women across the province. He called on community members, activists, and non-governmental organisations to collaborate with the SAPS in the fight against gender-based violence (GBV) and femicide.
The motive for the latest killing was unknown at this stage. Any member of the public who might have witnessed the incident or have information that could help in the investigation and lead to the arrest of the suspect should please contact the nearest police station or crime stop on 086-00-10111 or via MySAPS App. Callers could remain anonymous, the SAPS said on Sunday.
On Saturday, President Cyril Ramaphosa called on all South Africans to help end the culture of silence around GBV and femicide and to report known perpetrators to the SAPS.
This comes after the body of a yet another young woman was found dumped under a tree in Dobsonville in Soweto, Johannesburg, on Friday. There has been a surge in GBV and femicide cases since the start of the coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown.
“It is a dark and shameful week for us as a nation. Criminals have descended to even greater depths of cruelty and callousness. It simply cannot continue,” Ramaphosa said in a statement on Saturday.
“We note with disgust that at a time when the country is facing the gravest of threats from the pandemic, violent men are taking advantage of the eased [level 3] restrictions on movement to attack women and children.
“As we still struggle to come to terms with the brutality inflicted on Tshegofatso Pule, Naledi Phangindawo, Nompumelelo Tshaka, and other women in the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal whose bodies were found dumped this week, another woman has lost her life,” Ramaphosa said.
The manner in which these defenceless women were killed pointed to an unconscionable level of barbarism and lack of humanity. Tshegofatso Pule, who was eight months pregnant, was found stabbed to death and hanging from a tree in an open veld last week. It was also suspected that one of the murdered Eastern Cape women was a victim of a mob killing. Authorities in KwaZulu-Natal said this week an elderly woman was raped and a child was found dead in a field, and two young women were shot dead.
“According to the SAPS, there has been an increase in violent crime, especially murders, since we entered alert level 3. We need to understand what factors are fuelling this terrible trend and, as society as a whole, address them urgently,” Ramaphosa said.
He also noted that South Africa had among the highest levels of intimate partner violence in the world, and that as many as 51 percent of South African women had experienced violence at the hands of someone with whom they were in a relationship.
“In far too many cases of gender-based violence, the perpetrators are known to the victim, but they are also known to our communities. That is why we say this is a societal matter and not a matter of law enforcement alone. Gender-based violence thrives in a climate of silence. With our silence, by looking the other way because we believe it is a personal or family matter, we become complicit in this most insidious of crimes,” Ramaphosa said.
African News Agency/ANA