Male siblings and intimate partners among those most likely to commit GBV: Powa

Between June 2020 and April 2021, SAPS recorded 1,100 cases of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm in which the perpetrators were found to be male partners.

25 November 2021 - 14:00
Anti-abuse organisation Powa is calling on government to increase resources for victims of GBV.
Anti-abuse organisation Powa is calling on government to increase resources for victims of GBV.
Image: 123RF/olegdudko / File photo

Male siblings and intimate partners are among the most likely perpetrators of domestic violence.

That's according to women’s rights NGO People Opposing Women Abuse (Powa), which cited last year's SAPS reports on gender-based violence (GBV).

The reports show that between June 2020 and April 2021, SAPS recorded 1,100 cases of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm in which the perpetrators were found to be male partners. 

Twenty-two murders were perpetrated by an intimate partner of the victim and 19 by husbands of the victims. 

“Close family members, such as brothers of the victims, also ranked high as most likely perpetrators of domestic violence, with 397 cases of assault GBH committed by a sibling.

“Although research has repeatedly indicated that GBV-related crime is severely under-reported, it is clear from these trends that patriarchy is heavily embedded in the collective psyche of South African homes. Increased socioeconomic pressures in the Covid-19 pandemic have contributed to continued proliferation of violence against women and children.” 

Powa called on government to allocate more resources to help fight GBV.

“We call on government to boost resources to help this vulnerable group. As the country moves to economic recovery from the pandemic, we remind our people that it can’t be sustained in a broken society,” Powa CEO Jeanette Sera said.

Minister of women and people with disabilities Maite Nkoana-Mashabane on Thursday called on communities to report incidents of GBV. 

Newly-elected Joburg mayor Dr Mpho Phalatse said the annual campaign against women and child abuse should extend beyond 16 days. She also highlighted the importance of introducing initiatives for men in the fight against GBV. 

“We have committed many resources to empowering women, but we forgot to empower men to handle empowered women. Patriarchy is something we need to fight systematically as well, and men need to be assisted to transition into a dispensation where women are independent and empowered,” said Phalatse. 

The city will introduce integrated policing, with SAPS and metro police working together towards improved community safety.


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