Cheryl Kahla
Deputy Online News Editor
2 minute read
26 Aug 2021
7:35 am

Gauteng teen pregnancies: ‘Name the perpetrators,’ says ANCWL

Cheryl Kahla

The ANCWL says teenagers are 'impregnated by perpetrators who must face the law'.

Picture: iStock

Following the latest figures pertaining to teenage pregnancies in Gauteng, the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) is calling on Police Minister Bheki Cele to arrest “all the perpetrators of statutory rape”.

Teen pregnancies in South Africa

ANCWL secretary-general Meokgo Matuba said the women’s league is saddened by the high pregnancy rate among teenagers in South Africa, adding that it is a multifaceted problem.

It is a social issue with “many contributing factors such as gender inequalities and gender-based violence”, the ANCWL said in a statement.

Name and shame the perpetrators

The ANCWL called on South Africans – either in an individual capacity or institutions – to provide psycho-social support to teenagers and encouraged them to name the perpetrators.

“These teens were impregnated by perpetrators who must face the law. it is important to know these perpetrators and their ages so the law can take its course without fear or favour and without prejudice.”

The ANCWL also called on the South African Police Service (Saps) to “come onboard to investigate these cases of statutory rape that resulted in these high numbers of teenage pregnancies”.

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Saps action plan

Matuba reminded the public that “sex with a person below the age of 16 must face the full might of the law”. In addition, it is up to each and everyone to report these cases.

“We call on community organisations and patriotic citizens to report such cases in the communities and ensure the girls get all the necessary support they need,” Matuba said.

The ANCWL also demanded a commitment from the minister of police, as well as an action plan “on how they will use the available information to arrest all these perpetrators”.

Social and health problem

Earlier this month, the Democratic Alliance’s (DA’s) Refiloe Nt’sekhe said 23,226 teenage pregnancies had been reported in the province from April 2020 to March 2021.

The information was extracted from a written response to questions that were directed at health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi in the legislature.

Nt’sekhe said teenage pregnancies remained a serious social and health problem in South Africa.

Additional reporting by Siyanda Ndlovu.

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