Massive increase of killing of women and children in South Africa
South African society is becoming more, not less, violent. This was confirmed by the 2017/18 crime statistics released by the South African Police Service (SAPS) yesterday.
Between 1993 and 2011 the murder rate – the most reliable of all crime statistics – declined almost consistently year on year. The highest murder rate in 100 years (78 murders per 100 000 people) was recorded in 1993, as South Africa transitioned to democracy. By 2011 it had dropped to 30.1 per 100 000.
But over the past six years, we have seen a reversal of this downward trend. The murder rate is currently 35.2 per 100 000 – ensuring that South Africa remains one of the 10 most murderous countries in the world.
In the most recent financial year (2017/18) murder overall increased by 6.9% in the country. The number of women murdered increased by 11%, the number of boys by 20%, and girls by 10% from the year before.
Violence affects all South Africans, with the greatest impact on people who are black and poor. Young black men have the highest chance of being murdered. But violence against children and women is at the root of this problem. The effects on individuals are long-term – children who grow up in violent households are more likely to use or become victims of violence later in life.