Acting Chief Justice Zondo raises concerns about SA's high levels of GBV

The acting Chief Justice on Tuesday highlighted the impact of lockdown regulations on domestic violence.

FILE: Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo. Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN - Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo has raised concern about the country's high levels of gender-based violence (GBV).

This while presenting the Judiciary’s annual performance report.

Zondo has highlighted the murder of Fort Hare University student Nosicelo Mtebeni, who was killed and dismembered by her boyfriend in August.

In another high-profile femicide during Women's Month, UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana was raped and murdered by a teller at a Claremont post office in 2019.

The acting Chief Justice on Tuesday highlighted the impact of lockdown regulations on domestic violence.

"Indeed, shortly after the lockdown began, several southern African countries noted a significant uptick in the frequency of the domestic violence calls into the hotlines and police stations as well as deaths," Zondo said.

He also referenced a Gauteng Health Department report delivered during Women's Month that shows girls between the ages of 10 and 14 had given birth to 934 babies between April 2020 and March 2021.

"Some of those pregnancies would have occurred during the lockdown when these children of school-going age were at home. These statistics raise disturbing questions about who the fathers of these babies are and when and how these children fell pregnant," Zondo said.

Zondo said that every year during Women's Month in August or the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence campaign, citizens were reminded of how horrific and dangerous South Africa had become for women and children.