Gatvol South Africans call for the return of the death penalty

Citizens Forum spokesperson Dennis Bloem. Picture: Matthews Baloyi/Independent Newspapers

Citizens Forum spokesperson Dennis Bloem. Picture: Matthews Baloyi/Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 29, 2024


The re-introduction of the death penalty in our country won’t work, considering the ineffectiveness of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), says an analyst, Professor Andre Duvenage.

Duvenage said the nonprofessionalism that was within the NPA would cause more harm to the system, should the death penalty be applied back into the law.

“I would rather not go for the death penalty because our whole legal system has become ineffective, inefficient, and its way too corrupt. We have seen multiple instances where our prosecution and judicial systems are being used politically.

“The introduction of the death penalty is something I would not like to see,” he said.

However, he said there were strong arguments in favour of the death penalty due to escalating crime.

On Thursday, Duvenage was responding to the Citizens Forum’s statement that sought to persuade government to re-consider its decision that declared the death penalty as unconstitutional.

The Forum’s spokesperson, Dennis Bloem, said the idea was informed by the high levels of crime within the country.

“Crime in the country is completely out of control. The country is in a serious crisis.

“There is no more respect for human life. The murder rate in our country is worse than in a war zone. Women, children, nobody is safe anymore. Criminals in this country enjoy more rights than law-abiding citizens. South Africa has become a big open prison, where everybody lives in constant fear.

“Law enforcement agencies, police, judicial officers, private security members, farmers and farm dwellers are killed daily. Criminals don't fear and respect police officers,” Bloem reiterated.

A 42-year-old Sobantu Plaatjie agreed with the Citizens Forum’s sentiments of bringing back the death penalty, saying criminals were doing as they pleased in the country.

Plaatjie said criminals no longer respected law enforcement agencies, adding that they disregarded life like it was nothing.

“The ‘hang paal’ must come back; in that way, these thugs will be afraid to commit crime. These guys, the way they are so brazen, they can even mug you in broad daylight. You look at the number of cash heists in our country now, it’s extremely high; they have access to guns and Lord knows where they get these guns.

“While these politicians advocate for the death penalty, they must also look into these nice things that they are offering prisoners in jail. These people must feel that they are arrested in order to have a fear of going back there, but here, it’s a vacation here,” he concluded.