Rape kit shortage debacle – victims will not be denied justice‚ police assure

Rape victims will not be left without hope‚ the Eastern Cape police have said – despite the province’s safety MEC admitting a severe shortage of rape collection kits.

In official written responses to the Democratic Alliance (DA) last week‚ MEC Weziwe Tikana revealed the police did not have a single DNA collection or rape kit on hand.

Tikana said police in the province used 41‚545 rape and 44‚600 DNA collection kits in 2017/18 – but none of either were “currently on hand” for the 2018/19 year to date.

“[The] shortage is a national challenge and not isolated only to the Eastern Cape‚” Tikana said.

The responses are signed off by the police’s provincial head of finance and administration‚ Brigadier T Mjali who said the numbers are “correct and verified with the offices”.

It was a situation the DA’s Bobby Stevenson described as a “shocking betrayal of the rights of women”‚ and one that could see perpetrators of violent crimes – especially rape – go free and their victims denied justice.

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