It is sad to note that 15 years into our hard won democracy and the promises in our Bill of Rights, women still cannot leave their homes without the fear of rape, said Public Protector Thuli Madonsela at the opening of “A Brick Wall: Rape And The Criminal Justice System” an art exhibition hosted by the Tshwaraganang Legal Advocacy Centre.
Worst of all even their homes are not the sanctuaries they are meant to be. Every day, we hear horrendous stories of some little girl, older person, person with disability or woman in general, having been raped in their homes where they should be safe.
More often than not such rape is perpetrated by a relative or someone close the girl or woman.
When such things happen to the people, the state has two key roles being to care for the victim/survivor and affected family and to prosecute the perpetrator. In addition to this, the state’s duty includes the protection, which, according to emerging court jurisprudence, incorporates the prevention of preventable harm. Unfortunately, the state often fails women on all of these.
This is the point that the exhibition entitled “Brick Wall: Rape and the Criminal Justice System”, seeks to drive home.