Pretoria: Justice and Correctional Services Minister Michael Masutha says his department will increase the number of dedicated sexual offences courts to eliminate gender-based violence.
This, according to Masutha, is to protect the rights of vulnerable members of society.
Delivering his department’s Budget Vote in Parliament on Monday, Minister Masutha said the promotion of the rights of vulnerable members of society remains his department’s priority.
Last year, former Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, launched the National Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) Programme aimed at protecting the rights of the vulnerable.
The launch of the programme received the thumbs-up from various Chapter 9 institutions, which include the South African Human Rights Commission.
“By the end of 2015/16, we must have upgraded 57 Regional Courts into Sexual Offences Courts,” said Minister Masutha.
To date, 22 Sexual Offences Courts have been designated. These courts, according to the minister, guarantee high conviction rates because of the specialised skills deployed to these courts.
With regard to Traditional Courts, Minister Masutha said his department is considering all comments made before Parliament, with a view to drafting a revised bill that addresses all concerns that have been raised.
SOURCE: SOUTH AFRICA OFFICIAL NEWS