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No wonder our police force’s attempt at eradicating the rape and sexual abuse of children, as well as the rape and abuse of woman in general is getting absolutely nowhere! The ‘Child Protection Unit (CPU) and the so called FCS (Family, Child and Sexual Offences unit) has been “re-instated” and “disbanded” and “re-instated” so many times over the past 13 years not even the South African Police Services know whether they officially exist or not. Now our esteemed Police Commissioner has “once again” announced that it is now officially re-instated.
In a message to the public on National television in February 2010 the Minister announced that the FCS unit was to be officially re-instated on a national bases in April of 2010 (Refer ‘Buddy and Me’ blog Day 161 – 17th February 2010) so does that mean that our Police Commissioner is so far behind in his correspondence with the Minister that he is not aware of the fact that the unit was officially re-instated 18 months ago.
Police reinstate elite women, children and sexual offences unit
SA Police Service National Commissioner, General Bheki Cele and Deputy Minister of Police Maggie Sotyu in high spirits at the relaunch in PE of a national unit to fight family violence, child abuse and sexual offences.
Men who abused women and children were worse than animals, National Commissioner of the SA Police Service Geberal Bheki Cele said in Port Elizabeth today at the official relaunch of the specialised Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit (FCS).
The scrapping of the FCS in 2006 was met with public outrage and while South Africa’s overall crime statistics have decreased for the second consecutive year, crimes against women and children have been on the increase.
The head of the reinstated FCS unit General M Y Botsheleng said 1 864 police officers have been specially trained to staff 176 FCS clusters throughout the country. She said 286 of the special officers were deployed at 27 FCS clusters in the Eastern Cape.
Cele said the SAPS planned to recruit many more women to work for the FCS because it was difficult for women to report sexual abuse ordeals to men. Meanwhile, he urged male FCS personnel to treat women complainants with respect, remembering that they might be in both physical and emotional pain.
He said policemen should not put women in danger by advising them to go back home and negotiate with their abusers. And when women victims came in for help, policemen should not comment on personal matters like the wearing of short skirts.
“You are not fashion advisers. You are police officers.”
He said parents — especially mothers — should listen to their children when they said they were being abused at home.
“Don’t tell them to be quiet because the man in question was paying for the family’s food. By tolerating abuse you are turning your home into a brothel,” he said.
Cele also warned men and their accomplices — especially in the Eastern Cape — that the so-called “ukutwala” tradition of abducting young girls and forcing them into marriage, was unacceptable.
He urged communities to make a principled decision that they would not remain quiet if they knew of women and children who were being abused.
“It is my wish that one day it will be possible for women in South Africa to walk alone at midnight without fear of being raped or attacked.”
Representatives of various organisations including the National Prosecuting Authority, the Department of Social Development and gender activist bodies signed a pledge to support the fight against crimes against women and children.
In an interview, Family Policy Institute director Errol Naidoo said the reinstatement of the FCS unit together with the Government’s recent adoption of a policy document that acknowledged that healthy families were the key to the success of South African society, were encouraging developments.
However he said the Government could not restore families on its own. They could only create an environment in which families could thrive. But it was up to the church, in partnership with the Government and others, to bring about family restoration.
‘Buddy and Me’ – So lets hope THIS Time they are going to keep the FCS unit around long enough to actually become effective.
My question to our esteemed Commissioner of Police is:
“Based on the fact that we are experiencing on average 600 child rape cases every day in South Africa with only between 15 and 18% of them being reported by mothers, and the fact that section 54 of the Sexual Offences Act 32/2007 which states that: “Any person who is made aware of the fact that a child has been raped or sexually abused fails to report it to the authorities is guilty of an offence” was promulgated 4 years ago, but to date there is no record of ANYONE having been charged under this section of the Act?, what are you and our government doing to encourage mothers to report the rape of their children?
Read my ‘Proposed Solution to Stopping the Rape and Sexual Abuse of Children’ (Blog 58) and see what you SHOULD BE DOING!!!!