Judiciary concerned over murder, rape cases

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Nuusita Ashipala

Oshakati-The judiciary is concerned over the volumes of rape and murder crimes perpetrated against women and children – and which currently constitutes over 70 percent of the criminal cases being referred to the Windhoek High Court.

Between 2015 and 2016, 45 rape and murder cases were tried and finalised in the Windhoek High Court of which 33 involved cases of violence against women and children.

“It is sad to note that violence against women and children –invariably involving rape or murder – remains a serious problem in our society. The gravity of the problem is apparent from the criminal cases heard in the High Court,” said Deputy Judge President Hosea Angula here yesterday.

Speaking at the opening of the legal year held at the Oshakati High Court yesterday, Angula said of the cases finalised the sentences imposed for murder committed against women and children is between 19 and 31 years together.

Angula said the sentences is contrary to views held that courts are soft on violence against women and children. Angula read the speech on behalf of Chief Justice Peter Shivute. This week media reports indicated 13 girls were raped in the Ohangwena Region alone, of which most cases involved older men raping girls who are their relatives.

In Oshikoto Region nine rape cases have been recorded since the start of the year.
Among those raped includes a 3-year-old minor, two school-going teenagers as well as a pensioner aged 65.

Two women were murdered in the Oshikoto Region this year.
Despite the finalisation of rape and murder cases in the Windhoek High Court, the northern High Court was also able to deliver 104 judgement altogether in 2016.

Of the 104 cases finalised, 31 of them were civil and labour related, while 73 were criminal trial, criminal appeals and criminal reviews.

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