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More than R55 million spent on GBV programmes in Western Cape since 2019

Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez previously unveiled two new gender-based violence (GBV) safety shelters, that will service rural areas on the West Coast. Picture: Supplied

Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez previously unveiled two new gender-based violence (GBV) safety shelters, that will service rural areas on the West Coast. Picture: Supplied

Published Jul 3, 2022

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This article first appeared in the 30 June 2022 edition of the Cape Argus newspaper.

Cape Town - The Western Cape Social Development Department spent more than R55 million on programmes to address rape, sexual assault and the abuse of women and children in the Province between 2019 and 2022.

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Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez revealed the amount in a written response to provincial ANC social development spokesperson Gladys Bakubaku-Vos, who had written to her asking for details about the prevalence of sexual violence in the Western Cape.

Bakubaku-Vos also asked Fernandez for a breakdown of expenditure in each of the police precincts in the top 30 police stations where rape and sexual assaults were reported.

In 2019 the budget for the programmes was R14.1 million; R14.4m in 2020 the same for 2021 and R13m in the current year.

Fernandez said the amounts included programmes in Kraaifontein, Mfuleni, Delft, Harare and Gugulethu.

Regarding expenditure in the police precincts where rape and sexual assaults were reported, Fernandez said the overall budget for the department’s Victim Empowerment Programme (VEP) services came to R239 million over the past four financial years.

Fernandez said the VEP services provided “a basket of services to victims of crime, including victims of sexual offences”.

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The ANC’s provincial legislature spokesperson on Social Development, Gladys Bakubaku-Vos. Picture: Facebook

She said these included the provision of crisis containment service at the seven Thuthuzela Care centres; shelter services for women and their children in need of a safe space and court support services to provide emotional and practical support to victims through any legal proceedings.

Bakubaku-Vos said she had asked the question to get a fuller understanding of GBV in all areas of the province.

“This information will help us to make demands to the provincial government on which areas it must focus resources on. We now want more GBV shelters to be deployed in the poor working class communities where the majority of these incidents take place,” she said.

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