The man arrested for stabbing Evelyn de Kock to death will appear in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday. The 50-year old suspect was arrested in Eldorado Park, Johannesburg, on Monday. De Kock’s body was discovered in her family’s back room with multiple stab wounds in Eersterust, east of Pretoria on Sunday. Her family says it hopes justice will swiftly take its course.
Women, Persons with Disability and Youth minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, visited the family of the 42-year-old to offer condolences on behalf of government on Tuesday. She says gender-based violence can be defeated through a collective effort of men and women working together.
“We are working on these issues of Gender Based Violence but we need CSOs, we need NPOs. We need NGOs particularly those that are led by men that this is not an African style. This is not a South African style. We are all saying enough is enough.”
“I don’t want to see him again. I don’t want to see that man anymore. I don’t want to see him. I feel very very down, very very heartbroken. Very very heartbroken. Yes because he didn’t like her to have friends, with us, me and her sisters and brothers. She must all day be with him in her room. He didn’t want her with us and he was doing anything for her. She must only stay there in that room,” says the deceased’s mother, Grace Ngwatla.
De Kock’s killing is one of many femicide cases that have raised the ire of South Africans who are calling for more to be done to protect women.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has also condemned the scourge, calling on South Africans to end the culture of silence around the crime.
According to the President’s statement on this, South Africa has among the highest levels of intimate partner violence in the world, with as much as 51% of South African women having experienced violence at the hands of someone with whom they are in a relationship.
“In far too many cases of gender-based violence, the perpetrators are known to the victim, but they are also known to our communities. That is why we say this is a societal matter, and not a matter of law enforcement alone. Gender-based violence thrives in a climate of silence. With our silence, by looking the other way because we believe it is a personal or family matter, we become complicit in this most insidious of crimes,” President Ramaphosa said.
The President has urged communities to work with the police and report any tip-offs they may have to the Crime Stop Hotline on 08600 10111 or send an anonymous SMS to Crime Line at 32211, or to call the Gender-Based Violence Command Centre at 0800 428 428