CONCERNED: Botlogile Tshireletso

The launch of the 16 days of Activism on November 25 was marred by the brutal murder of a 15- year- old standard six pupil .

Police suspect that the school girl from Seherelela settlement in Ngwaketse West was killed by her older boyfriend.

The 20-year -old boyfriend later committed suicide and his body was found hanging from a tree.

The gruesome discovery of the girl’s body was made by her younger sister, the Jwaneng Police Station Commander, Theriso Thatayotlhe  disclosed in an interview on Wednesday.

Information reaching the Voice suggested that the orphaned girl did not go home after a traditional choir practice on Monday night and instead went with the boyfriend.

Meanwhile on Monday, the Member of Parliament for Mahalapye East, Botlhogile Tshireletso who is the Chairperson of the women’s Parliamentary Caucus said that violence against women and children in the country was disturbingly rising despite efforts by government and law enforcement agencies to curb the crime.

According to Tshireletso increasing crime include  rape, defilement of girls and common assault.

“In 2007, 1596 rape cases were reported. By 2011 the number had increased to 1800. There were 391 cases of defilement of girls in 2997 and 529 in 2011. For the same years, common assault against women increased from 11899 in 2007 to 16098 in 2011,” Tshireletso explained.

Thatayotlhe however said that in places such as Seherelela and other areas that fall under his policing area, defilement was not necessarily treated as  a crime by the community hence nobody objected when the 15- year -old walked away with a man in the middle of the night.

“It is common in many settlements which are under my policing area that younger girls are defiled and community members accept it. Usually defilement cases are not reported because some of the community members do not even know that it is a criminal offence to sleep with a young girl,” Thatayotlhe Said

He further added that, “Everybody is in the festive mood and preparing for Christmas celebrations. Now that schools are closed, every evening, young girls, boys, women and men alike go for choir practices to prepare for the competitions during the Christmas and New Year holidays. Practice can go on until very late at night and less care is given to the vulnerable children,” Thatayotlhe further noted.

Commenting on  a similar case from a neighbouring settlement in which the man did not commit suicide and was therefore charged with the murder of his 15- year- old girlfriend, Thatayotlhe said:“It is worrying and it seems people who have problems copy the wrong way of ending their troubles.”

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