Outrage – Urgent call to Minister Radebe to review entire SOA Act
We at WMACA are outraged, extremely angryand disallusionned after a High Court ruling highlighted a fatal omission in the new Sexual Offences Act. We and other childrens rights groups have been warning the Department of Justice since the Act was introduced that there were serious inadequacies which needed to be addressed but no attempt has been made to rectify this situation.
All our work at trying to secure convictions and severe sentences for child sexual offenders is in jeopardy unless Parliament and Ministers take action immediately to mathe necessary amendments and wesist that the entire Act be reviewed if we are to eradiciate the scourge of rape and all sexual offences in our society.
“Experts have warned that anyone accused of committing a sexual assault in terms of the act could now apply to have their charges quashed on the basis of the court’s ruling.
In addition, those who have already been convicted could apply to have their convictions set aside.
In effect, the judgment means that anyone accused of crimes in terms of certain sections of the new Sexual Offences Act cannot be formally charged – because legislators omitted to prescribe sentences for at least 29 offences listed in the act.”
Taken from Saturday Star – Journalist – Fatima Shroeder