Khensani Maseko, scholar kills herself after rape, including to outrage over sexual violence in South Africa

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Khensani Maseko, a scholar on the Rhodes College in Grahamstown, stated she was raped by one other scholar in Could, in accordance with a press release by the college.

On August 3, the day she took her personal life, Maseko posted a cryptic message on social media.

“Nobody deserves to be raped,” she wrote and posted on Instagram with an image displaying what’s believed to be her date of delivery and that day’s date.

Maseko’s account has since been faraway from Instagram.

Rhodes College confirmed her death and stated authorities held a gathering with Maseko’s mother and father after she reported in July that she had been raped.

The college says it was agreed that Maseko needs to be taken residence pending an investigation into her allegations.

Women in South Africa are marching against gender violence with #TotalShutdown protest

The third-year scholar died just a few days earlier than her scheduled return to the college, the place she was to satisfy with these investigating the case on the establishment.

The person accused of the rape has been suspended, the college stated within the assertion posted on its website, including that it was working with South Africa’s police and the Nationwide Prosecuting Authority to launch an inquest into Maseko’s dying.

Police haven’t launched the suspect’s identify.

“The tragic passing of Khensani won’t mark an finish to the investigation into the circumstances main as much as her passing,” Rhodes College Vice-Chancellor Dr. Sizwe Mabizela stated.

The college’s flag will probably be flown at half-staff to honor Maseko, Mabizela added.

She was laid to relaxation in Johannesburg at present.

Ladies killed at increased fee

Statistics present sexual violence towards ladies is a significant issue in South Africa.

Based on estimates released in June by the nationwide statistical service of South Africa, 138 out of each 100,000 ladies within the nation had been raped in 2016 and 2017.

“This determine is among the many highest on the earth. Because of this, some have labeled South Africa the ‘rape capital of the world,'” it stated.

By comparability, the 2015 figures for the variety of rapes in Switzerland was 6.four instances per 100,000 ladies.

Additionally, the nation’s fee of femicide — the killing of a lady or a woman as a result of she is feminine — is five times more than the global rate.

TotalShutDown march

Maseko’s dying has sparked public outrage in South Africa, the place ladies typically use social media to share pictures of girls who’ve been killed by their companions.

Thousands of women marched last week throughout the nation to protest gender-based violence within the nation.
South African women protest against gender abuse in Cape Town, South Africa on  August 1, 2018.

The TotalShutDown protest was held to unite South African ladies towards the continuing “battle on their our bodies,” stated Loyiso Saliso, a spokeswoman for the motion.

“August is the girl’s [month] however ladies on this nation aren’t pleased. We have now nothing to really feel, we now have nothing to have a good time. The difficulty of gender-based violence has solely been getting worse somewhat than higher and that’s very seen in our statistics as effectively,” she stated.

The ladies marched to South Africa’s Parliament, Supreme Courtroom of Enchantment and different provincial and regional constructions at hand over a memorandum of calls for to the federal government.

“When perpetrators are extra afraid of the implications they’re going to face as soon as they violate ladies, we’ll begin seeing much less of girls and youngsters disappearing, or being killed,” Saliso stated.

A precedence crime

South Africa is prosecuting some cases of sexual violence towards ladies.
In Could, Sandile Mantsoe was discovered responsible of the Johannesburg homicide of 22-year-old Karabo Mokoena, his ex-girlfriend.

The day he was convicted, a scholar at Mangosuthu College of Expertise in Umlazi, Zolile Khumalo, was allegedly shot and killed by her boyfriend.

In lots of instances of violence towards ladies, companions are concerned within the crime, however South African ladies are additionally victims of random rapes and killings.

South Africa’s former President Jacob Zuma declared violence against women “a precedence crime” after a string of killings that shocked the nation in 2016.

He known as on legislation enforcement companies within the nation to make sure all perpetrators of sexual violence had been delivered to justice.

Renewed fears

However Maseko’s dying has reignited fears over sexual violence within the nation.

Star Khulu, 28, advised CNN she tries to make herself look much less enticing anytime she leaves her residence in Johannesburg.

South African women at 'The TotalShutdown' march in Pretoria  on August 1, 2018.

She stated she believes dressing in a much less provocative method reduces her danger of being sexually assaulted.

As a strategist in an promoting company, she avoids coming residence late from work. Even within the daytime, she takes precautions.

“I detour if I’m approaching greater than two males at a time. Generally you simply do not need to hear the catcalling, even if you happen to say hiya and transfer on — that might be an invite for extra,” she stated.

Khulu says males have turn out to be aggressive up to now when she didn’t acknowledge their advances.

“A person as soon as grabbed my arm in a grocery store as a result of I did not have a look at him and smile when he stated I used to be stunning. Males seize your bum and do not see something improper with it,” Khulu stated.

“Generally, I simply smile at them to keep away from hassle. I attempt every thing, daily to not get raped,” she stated.



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