Learners at a primary school in Grassy Park, Cape Town, protesting against girls being increasingly targeted for rape. Picture. Thomas Holder/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
Learners at a primary school in Grassy Park, Cape Town, protesting against girls being increasingly targeted for rape. Picture. Thomas Holder/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

16 Days of Activism against GBV: Basic Education wants to crack down on sexual abuse cases

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Dec 4, 2021

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Cape Town – Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga says they will start to keep statistics of children who are sexually abused in schools.

This comes against the backdrop of the increasing number of schoolgirls who are getting pregnant.

Some of the girls are as young as 10 years old.

Deputy Minister of Basic Education Reginah Mhaule recently told the National Council of Provinces that there were 130 000 schoolgirls who got pregnant in 2019.

Child groups, MPs and NGOs have called for action against those involved in impregnating young girls.

Motshekga, who was replying to a written question from DA MP Desiree van der Walt, on whether they will keep the register on sexual abuse cases in schools, she said they were preparing to do that.

“Yes, we intend to work with our provincial departments of education to find best suited statistical management methods for sexual abuse and harassment, as well as similar violations in schools,” said Motshekga.

The multi-party women’s caucus in Parliament also called for law enforcement agencies to act against people who impregnate young girls.

Chairperson of the committee Nkhensani Kate Bilankulu said recently that they would not allow 10-year-old girls to fall pregnant without anyone being held accountable.

“I would like to urge the authorities to leave no stone unturned to act harshly against the perpetrators. There is a legal age for sexual consent, and 10 years old is definitely not the age. I want to see all the perpetrators, be it educators or anyone else, behind bars. I call on the authorities to clearly state how many cases have been opened that relate to teenage pregnancies,” said Bilankulu.

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Political Bureau

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