The president of South Africa on Saturday urged his compatriots to fight together against rape and sexual assault, which, in his words, is a “national crisis” in South Africa.
Women are being raped and killed and it is time to end sexual assault, said Cyril Ramaphosa at the launch of an election manifesto for the ruling African National Congress party, of which he is a leader.
“We have made tremendous progress in improving women’s lives… However, gender-based violence is a national crisis, and we are committed to ending it,” said Mr. Ramaphosa.
It proposed a number of measures against sexual assault, including tougher penalties.
The South African police recorded in March 2018 some 40,035 cases of rape in the previous 12 months, according to Africa Check, an independent organization of fact-checking.
This is a slight increase from the previous year, when 39,828 cases were registered in the country.
Some believe that the scale of the phenomenon in South Africa far exceeds these figures.