'This is a very dark period': Ramaphosa to meet police top brass on gender-based violence

03 September 2019 - 11:48 By Qaanitah Hunter
Nineteen-year-old UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana who was murdered inside a Cape Town post office. File photo.
Nineteen-year-old UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana who was murdered inside a Cape Town post office. File photo.
Image: SUPPLIED

President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Tuesday meet police leaders for a briefing on how they intend dealing with growing gender-based violence in the country.

The president added his voice to the soaring outrage following reports of the brutal murder of two women.

“This is a very dark period for us as a country. The assaults, rapes and murders of South African women are a stain on our national conscience,” he said.

Talking about the spate of violence against women, Ramaphosa said “we should all hang our heads in shame”.

He welcomed the arrest of a suspect who confessed to raping and killing Cape Town student Uyinene Mrwetyana.


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Mrwetyana was bludgeoned with a scale inside a post office in Claremont.

“Mrwetyana’s alleged killer was arrested and charged with rape, murder and defeating the ends of justice.

"The man suspected of killing Leighandre Jegels was also arrested and has since died in hospital,” said Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Khusela Diko.

Jegels, a South African boxing champion, was killed on Friday by her policeman boyfriend, who she had a restraining order against. Her mother, Rita, was shot and wounded.

After fleeing, the suspect was arrested after a head-on collision near Peddie in the Eastern Cape.

Despite criticism about inaction by police against femicide and gender-based violence, Ramaphosa commended law enforcement officers for their actions which led to the arrest of the two suspects.

“We have just commemorated Women’s Month. Sixty-three years after the women of 1956 marched for the right to live in freedom, women in this country live in fear, not of the apartheid police but of their brothers, sons, fathers and uncles,” he said.

Ramaphosa sent his "deepest condolences" to the Mrwetyana and Jegels families. 

, a South African boxing champion, was killed on Friday by her policeman boyfriend, who she had a restraining order against. Her mother, Rita, was shot and wounded.

After fleeing, the suspect was arrested after a head-on collision near Peddie in the Eastern Cape.

Despite criticism about inaction by police against femicide and gender-based violence, Ramaphosa commended law enforcement officers for their actions which led to the arrest of the two suspects.

“We have just commemorated Women’s Month. Sixty-three years after the women of 1956 marched for the right to live in freedom, women in this country live in fear, not of the apartheid police but of their brothers, sons, fathers and uncles,” he said.

Ramaphosa sent his "deepest condolences" to the Mrwetyana and Jegels families. 


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