Thursday, October 30, 2014

ANCWL Welcomes Multiple Life Sentences for Diepsloot Murderer
ANC Women's League demonstration in South Africa.
29 October 2014

The African National Congress Women`s League (ANCWL) joins all South Africans in welcoming the nine life sentences plus 15 years handed down to convicted murderer and rapist Ntokozo Hadebe.

The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria found Hadebe guilty of abducting, raping and murdering three children in the Diepsloot informal settlement last year.

The killings of Anelisa Mkhonto, 5, Zandile Mali, 3 and her cousin Yonelisa Mali, 2 were the height of depravity by a callous criminal with scant regard for the lives of society`s most vulnerable.

"Today our courts have vindicated our position that there is no place in society for unrepentant criminals; what he has done has deprived three children of a bright future.. the youngest victim was still in nappies when she was killed," says ANCWL spokesperson Edna Molewa.

"As Judge Nico Coetzee noted, the interests of society dictate that those convicted of such crimes should be harshly punished," addedMolewa.

The ANCWL congratulates the SAPS, and in particular the Child Protection Unit and the Honeydew/Diepsloot police station -for their efforts in bringing the perpetrator to book.

"This once again shows that collaboration between communities and law-enforcement can help rid us of criminals, " says Molewa.

The ANCWL also congratulates the SAPS for the arrest of a suspect in the killing of four year-old Taegrin Morris, who died after being dragged behind his mother`s hijacked vehicle earlier this year.

The ANCWL remains outraged at the continued levels of violence against women and children across the country, and once again urges all South Africans to assist the SAPS with information that may lead to the arrest of those suspected of crimes.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Mkhonto and Mali families; we hope the conviction of the killer of their loved ones may bring a means of closure and healing. The Morris family remains in our thoughts as they continue to grieve the loss of their child.

Issued by:
Edna Molewa
Head of Communications
African National Congress Women`s League

Khusela Sangoni 0728545707

ANCWL welcomes NPA decision to appeal

27 October 2014

The African National Congress Women`s League welcomes the decision by the National Prosecuting Authority to appeal the conviction and the sentence in the Oscar Pistorius Murder Trial. As an organisation, we remain convinced that another court could have justifiably reached a conviction of murder rather than culpable homicide in this case and we thus support the NPA in their application. As previously indicated, the ANC Women`s League will be making an application to be admitted as a Friend of the Court in this matter.

Issued by
Edna Molewa
Head of Communications
African National Congress Women`s League

Khusela Sangoni 0728545707

ANCWL statement on Oscar Pistorius sentencing

21 October 2014

The African National Congress Women`s League (ANCWL) notes the five-year sentence for culpable homicide given to paralympian Oscar Pistorius by the North Gauteng High Court. According to the Section 276 of the Criminal Procedure Act the accused serves will serve one sixth of the sentence, effectively10 months, and thereafter an offender can apply for placement under correctional supervision which is processed by Correctional Services

The ANCWL has studied the judgment and has developed a position that we planned to make public following sentencing. Our position will be considered in conjunction with the sentence, as we study the case law in question.

It is the organization`s view that an appeal is in the interests of justice, as well as to send a strong message to the public that crimes against women should carry the maximum penalty.

To this end the ANCWL intends to make representations to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) , based on legal opinion received and our findings on the case law.

The NPA has 14 days in which to file intention to appeal.

"We understand that they (NPA) haven`t made a decision on whether to appeal, and we will be guided by that, " says ANCWL spokesperson Edna Molewa.

The League wishes to reiterate that it remains dissatisfied with the culpable homicide verdict delivered by Judge Thokozile Masipa.

In support of this view we hold that regardless of who Mr. Pistorius believed to be behind the bathroom door that fateful night, he shot to kill - and therefore a murder did occur.

The ANCWL has consistently campaigned for harsh sentences in all cases of violence against women and children. It has particularly focused on cases where women are killed by their intimate partners. The killing of Reeva Steenkamp at the hands of her lover has once more brought this matter sharply into focus.

"What is at issue here isn`t just the sentence, but the very law that resulted in Mr Pistorius being convicted of culpable homicide instead of murder.. we want it struck down," says Molewa.

She added that one of the most distressing aspects of the judgment and sentence was that it set a harmful precedent.

Statistics indicate that a woman is killed in every eight hours in South Africa. This situation is abnormal and should be unacceptable to every citizen. The ANCWL calls on all South Africans to remember the victim, Reeva Steenkamp, and her family and friends who continue to mourn her.

Issued by
Edna Molewa
Head of Communications
African National Congress Women`s League

Khusela Sangoni 072 854 5707

ANCWL calling for Justice for our women and girls

10 October 2014

The African National Congress Women`s League (ANCWL) is concerned about recent incidents where the Justice system appears to be failing our women and children in some cases.

A recent case where a 50 year old Mpumalanga man was convicted of raping a 13 year old girl has been handed down a 6 year suspended sentence. This essentially means if he does not commit any criminal act for the next five years he will see no jail time for his deplorable actions.

The old man pleaded guilty to having sex with the child during a drinking spree in September 2013.

"This is a travesty of justice; a 13 year old girl cannot give consent, even if she had been drinking with the man. This is a case where an older man manipulated a young girl, fed her alcohol illegally and took advantage of her. According to our law this is the rape of a child and the perverted old man should go to jail, it is disgusting and shocking that he can get away with this," said Angie Motshekga, ANCWL President.

The age of consent in South Africa is 16, as specified by sections 15 and 16 read with section 1 of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act, 2007. Section 15 ("statutory rape") prohibits the commission of "*an act of sexual penetration with a child*", while section 16 ("statutory sexual assault") prohibits the commission of "*an act of sexual violation with a child*". Section 1 defines "child" as "*with reference to sections 15 and 16, a person 12 years or older but under the age of 16 years*".[46], so a sexual act with a child under that age constitutes statutory rape.

The ANCWL is calling on the National Prosecuting Authority to appeal the suspended sentence and ensure that justice is served, especially to safe guard of our children.


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