Durban - Police Minister Bheki Cele painted a grim picture of the scourge of gender-based violence as he delivered the country’s crime statistics for July to September this year.
“The rate at which women are abused, violated and some killed in South Africa remains worrying and unacceptable,“ said Cele at a media briefing in Pretoria on Wednesday morning.
“Many are killed by the people they know, people they love and trust.”
According to the statistics, 989 women were murdered between July 1 and September 30.
Cele said that as the country edged closer to commemorating the global 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children Campaign on Friday, the reality was that women continued to be victims of violent crime.
In addition to being murdered, 1 277 women were victims of attempted murder.
A total of 13 000 women were victims of assault with intend to cause grievous bodily harm.
Cele said 10 000 cases of rape were reported and 294 children were murdered during the three months.
“The crime statistics again show that we, as communities, continue to fail to protect some of the most vulnerable in society; our children.
“Last month, the kidnapping, rape and brutal murder of four-year-old Bokgabo Poo shocked the nation and the world.
“A four-year-old with so much to live for and look forward to, her life cut short by a man who has since been arrested.”
The murder rate in the country also rose.
A total of 7 004 people were killed, an increase of 841 compared to the same period in 2021 when the country was under lockdown.
Arguments, misunderstandings, road rage and provocations accounted for 956 murders in the country, said Cele.
The police minister said contact crimes, which included murder, attempted murder, common assault and sexual offences, increased by 18.5% overall.
Carjackings, house robberies and truck hijackings all showed an increase.
Cele said that as the country headed into the festive season, the SAPS would be be deploying 10 000 more police members.
“The inclusion of 10 000 more boots to the service in December will intensify police visibility during the festive season and beyond.
“More boots will be on the ground and escalated crime-prevention and crime-combating operations will be a daily occurrence until the end of January 2023.”