Break the silence on abuse

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Pretoria - Deputy Minister of Health, Dr Gwen Ramokgopa, has called on the Atteridgeville community to break the silence on woman and child abuse.

Responding to a tragedy involving a man who last Wednesday allegedly burnt to death a woman and her two daughters, aged 14 and 18, at their home in the Tsunami informal settlement, Ramokgopa challenged the community to reflect on what else needed to be done to stop the carnage of gender based violence.

She led a delegation, including local councillors and parliamentary constituency office, which visited relatives of the deceased Ralulimi family to provide support following the incident.

According to neighbours, the man had stopped visiting the family for a while and it was understood that the 33-year-old woman, Thifhelimbilu Ralulimi, had obtained a restraining order against him. 

He allegedly locked Ralulima and her two children inside the shack and set it on fire. The man later committed suicide in Soshanguve, where he was hiding since the incident.

Ramokgopa urged community members, especially women, to break the silence and report their abusive partners. She encouraged them to pledge solidarity with one another in order to reduce incidences of women and child abuse.

"Never be scared to inform police authorities about men who abuse you and your children. If you don't, these are possible consequences that we will continue to experience as a society. 

"This is a very unfortunate and unacceptable incident in our society, especially as we just emerged from Women's Month and at a time when our government is doing its best to curb domestic violence through family education and enforcement of laws meant to curb domestic violence," said Ramokgopa.

The delegation also visited a home where an 18-year-old woman was raped and murdered at the house backroom on 28 August 2011. She was a student at a local college, studying financial management.

Ralulimi and her two daughters will be buried on Saturday at Tshisaula village in Vhembe District, Limpopo. - BuaNews 

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