The African National Congress Women’s League (ANCWL) said it is dissatisfied and is disappointed by the six year sentence for murder granted to Oscar Pistorius.
ANCWL Secretary General Meokgo Matuba said the judgement was an insult to woman as it excluded issues of gender based violence.
“The ANCWL is dissatisfied with the judgement …due to the fact that South Africa has high rates of gender based violence cases and statistics indicate that a woman is killed in every eight hours in our country,” said Matuba.
On Wednesday, Judge Thokozile Masipa handed down Pistorius’ sentence saying the mitigating factors outweigh aggravating ones, which justify deviating from the minimum sentence of 15 years.
Pistorius was been sentenced to six years in prison for the murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, a sentencing more than two years in the making.
Matuba said they believe that the sentence is just a slap on the wrist on a murderer case and spit on the faces of the family and relatives of the victim.
“The sentence creates loss of trust in the judiciary system for many women who are abused and murdered daily in our country,” the SG said.
She added they have studied the judgment and have developed a position that they planned to make public following sentencing.
“We have closely followed the trial and Judge Masipa gave undue sympathy to the murder accused Pistorius. As the ANCWL we are appalled by the assertions made by the judge that this was not a gender based violence case. The pathology report had enough evidence to prove that the victim had injuries outside the shooting,” said Matuba.
“It is ANCWL’s view that if there is an appetite from judiciary system to deter people from committing this gruel acts of abusing and murdering women, the judiciary system must ensure that abusers and murderers receive the harshest maximum sentences and be locked in correctional facilities to fully serve their sentences and be released when they have been fully rehabilitated,” she added.
Matuba further said they will continue fighting for transformation within the judiciary system for all the women who are abused murdered and then receive a slap on the wrist from the judiciary system.