Based on police statistics, there were 31 deaths linked to domestic violence incidents in Gauteng from June to September, with a greater number of male victims than female. Domestic violence encompasses not only intimate partner relationships but also includes individuals living within the same household.

By Staff Reporter

In contrast to the deaths of women, there was a notable rise in the incidence of male deaths in domestic violence cases in Gauteng from June to September according to the police.

Last week, Lt-Gen Elias Mawela, the Gauteng police commissioner, delivered a presentation on the crime statistics for the months of July to September at the Gauteng provincial legislature’s community safety portfolio committee, providing insight into the prevailing crime situation in the province.

In a troubling revelation, a shocking 10,236 instances of domestic violence were reported within three months. The data indicates a consistent rise in occurrences, with 3,093 cases in July, 3,487 in August, and a distressing peak of 3,565 cases in September.

Brigadier Mpho Chakalane, the crime registrar for the Gauteng police, reported that 31 individuals died due to domestic violence, with a higher number of male victims than female.

“When looking at this one, the majority of the victims were male, with 18 fatalities, while 13 were female,” she stated.

The problem of domestic violence, however, extends beyond romantic partnerships between men and women. People who share a dwelling are also included in this group.

Relationships in which two people share common ancestry or are blood relatives are included, according to police spokesperson Brigadier Brenda Muridili. Her explanation encompassed siblings and in-laws.

Brigadier Muridili elaborated: “Other relationships include two people in an engagement, dating and sharing or recently shared the same residence. It includes a girlfriend, boyfriend, ex-girlfriend, ex-boyfriend, and tenants – people who share the same residence.”

Khulekani Sfiso Mthimunye, aged 21, voluntarily surrendered to police last month in connection with the alleged homicide of his father, a tragic incident stemming from domestic violence. Mthimunye cooperated with the police, leading them to his residence and specifically to his father’s bedroom, where the deceased’s mutilated remains were discovered on the floor.

In a separate incident, Jabu Mduduzi, aged 23, reportedly fatally stabbed his brother in the chest in the in June, before attempting to take his own life. The altercation between the brothers is said to have escalated from a food-related dispute, culminating in the accused allegedly inflicting the fatal stab wound on his brother.

Sandiso Motau, a community activist based in Pretoria, emphasised that it is important not to misinterpret these statistics as indicating a decreased level of risk for women. He argued that this points to a change in the way domestic violence issues are perceived.

“These statistics do not indicate that women are now at reduced risk. They continue to face significant danger of experiencing violence and/or being killed. To me, these figures suggest a growing focus on addressing domestic violence. Historically, there has been insufficient attention given to the issue of family violence.

“The issue of family violence is frequently ignored by authorities and the general public. From the work we have been doing, we have noticed that a significant number of incidents go unreported. A perfect example of the prevalence of family is the application for protection orders. A sizeable proportion of protection order applications are made by members of the same family,” Motau commented.

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