At the launch of 16 days of activism against gender violence, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development in the Western Cape said that just over 10,000 protection orders are registered in the province every month.
Hishaam Mohamed said the Western Cape had recorded the highest number in South Africa, and what was even more concerning was that it is an increase “of just over 2,000 protection order applications in the past year”.
The areas where the highest number of applications for protection orders were recorded include Khayelitsha, Nyanga, Philippi and Delft.
This comes after the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry found out that there were inefficiencies on how domestic violence cases are handled at the 3 Khayelitsha police stations. The Inquiry made some recommendations that the police have to implement.
At the recent Imbizo held at the Khayelitsha stadium, the Khayelitsha Cluster Commander, Major General Johan Brandt said that they have not developed a policy around the victim-friendly rooms at police stations, the establishment of an avenue for complaints by members of the public. Brandt also admitted that they have not appointed a team of researchers to enable a five-year research project on domestic violence to be undertaken in Khayelitsha.
He also stated that they have not fully implemented the recommendation of sending detectives for domestic violence training courses.
The Social Justice Coalition (SJC) one of the organizations that complained to the Western Cape government which led to the formation of the Commission of Inquiry recently marched against the rising number of cases of violence against women, children and members of the LGBTI community in Khayelitsha. In an interview with Elitsha, Nomthetho Kilo from the SJC said the inadequate resources that are allocated to police in Khayelitsha is one of the reasons for the rising number of gender based violence in Khayelitsha.
The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development in the Western Cape said authorities were planning to crack down on maintenance defaulters and domestic violence abusers.
During Women’s Month four months ago, the department engaged with thousands of women from across the Western Cape to find out why some victims did not return to court to finalise protection orders.