South Africans have expressed their shock and outrage over the recent murders of Naledi Phandingwayo and Tshegofatso Pule who were both murdered over the weekend.
Phadingwayo and Pule are the latest victims in a series of violent acts against women which have gripped the country over the past several months.
Heinous acts of murder
Pule’s lifeless body with several stab wounds was found hanging from a tree close to Florida Lake in Roodepoort in Gauteng’s West Rand.
The 28–year-old was eight months pregnant.
Gauteng Police Spokesperson Kay Makhubele says a case of murder is being investigated.
25-year-old Phadingwayo was murdered in KwaNonqaba in Mossel Bay in the Southern Cape on Saturday after being stabbed to death, allegedly by her partner.
According to Southern Cape South African Police Service Spokesperson Captain Malcolm Pojie, eyewitnesses say the suspect attacked Phandingwayo with a knife and an axe; and she was hacked all over her body, face, and limbs.
Pojie says the suspect handed himself over to police on Sunday and is set to appear in court on Wednesday.
Mounting calls for justice
The #JusticeForTshego and #JusticeforNaledi have been doing rounds on Twitter, where citizens have expressed their dismay over their deaths and have called for justice to be served.
For how long must we keep calling for justice to the killing of women which hardly ever happens🤷🏽♀️😢 killing a woman in SA has become a sign of manhood & bravery.We are objects,preys at the disposal of our killers and it is seen okay 🙆🏽♀️🙆🏽♀️#JusticeForNaledi #NalediPangindawo pic.twitter.com/xDGo2Qk3LE
— #TheUncapturedActivist 🇿🇦 (@AneleMda) June 8, 2020
Many have also condemned the violent acts of murder against young and defenceless women.
— MaMdhluli (@katli_mots) June 8, 2020
Strong calls for action against gender-based violence
During a visit to Pule’s family in Meadowlands Soweto on Wednesday, Gauteng Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko urged society to work together in ending gender-based violence.
Mazibuko called upon men to take up the fight against gender-based violence.
“We are disturbed that gender-based violence continues unabated. We wish to call upon members of the community to help us bring an end to such atrocities against women. Calling all males to say not in their name will they see women being abused. Let it be them that champion such campaigns. It can’t be right that always it’s us women who are standing in the streets singing, whilst the perpetrators are the ones that are just looking at us. Can we find an end to gender-based violence,” says Mazibuko.
Spike in GBV violence since COVID-19 lockdown
In April, Police Minister Bheki Cele said police received over 87 000 gender-based violence complaints during the first week of the national lockdown.
The calls received by the command centre include cases of domestic violence, rape, abuse (verbal, physical) among others.