Ramaphosa on femicide: Life must mean life

It's the second day of the World Economic Forum on Africa. The last two decades have witnessed Africa making great progress in improving economic and social conditions.


JOHANNESBURG - President Cyril Ramaphosa told protesters outside Parliament on Thursday, that he would announce harsh measures for sex offenders later in the day. 

He left a World Economic Forum meeting early to address demonstrators, who handed over a memorandum to him. 

The gathering was sparked by several incidents of crime against women, including the rape and murder of UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana.

"I come before you with great humility. I stand before you with a deep sense of feeling. I know, yes, I know. 

"I know that you are saying that enough is enough. I agree with you that indeed enough is enough." 

Ramaphosa said that by 1pm on Thursday he would address the nation, and provide South Africans with the measures that government will embark on to deal with femicide and sex crimes. 

"It is important that we continue as a nation to show our solidarity, to show our care and compassion," he said. 

As Ramaphosa spoke, crowds chanted for the death penalty to be reinstated. 

"Yes, I will be addressing precisely that issue as well - because I agree completely that the killing of women must be brought to an end here in South Africa, and we want the men of our country to take responsibility for the slaughtering of the women of our nation.

"We are going to draw a line in the sand and make sure that as a nation, as a government, we heighten the protection and the defence and safety or women in our nation." 

Ramaphosa said the men who rape and kill women must stay in prison for life. 

"We will be also advocating and changing the laws that once you've raped and killed a woman you get life. And life must mean life." 


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