Daniel Friedman
2 minute read
11 Sep 2018
3:00 pm

South Africans call for return of the death penalty

Daniel Friedman

While the IFP are the first major political party to call for discussion of the sentence following the release of this year's crime stats, many citizens appear to support the call.

IFP's Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who has been leading the party since its inception in 1975. Image: IFP.org.

Following the release of the 2017/2018 crime stats this morning, which showed a shocking 6.9% increase in murders and an increase in sexual assaults, the Inkhata Freedom Party (IFP) has called for the debate about the death penalty in South Africa to be revived.

A glance at social media shows that many South Africans share the party’s sentiments.

This is by no means the first time the party has expressed their view that the reinstatement of the death penalty should be discussed.

READ MORE: 57 South Africans murdered a day – crime statistics

On September 5 they made the same call on eNCA citing the country’s “out of control” crime rate.

In a statement released in July, IFP chief whip in parliament Narend Singh said the party had written to parliament’s joint constitutional review committee to request that the matter of whether or not the death penalty should be reinstated be “urgently” placed on the committee’s agenda for public input and discussion.

In May, the party’s Women’s Brigade made a similar call in relation to violence towards women.

The party is likely to see more support for the call following the release of the crime stats, that minister of police Bheki Cele himself said indicated that South Africa is close to a “war zone”.

Social media demonstrates that the IFP are by no means the only South Africans who either want the death penalty reinstated or at least a debate on the topic to proceed.

The death penalty was abolished by the constitutional court in June 1995 following a five-year moratorium that was placed on it in February 1990.

India recently reinstated capital punishment for those that rape children after nationwide protests over the prevalence of this crime in the country.

According to the crime stats released on Tuesday morning for 2017/2018, an estimated 20,336 people were killed during the period, 1,320 more than the previous year, and 40,035 were raped.

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