A COP’S comment sparked riots after he said a woman’s gang rape was lucky it only happened once.
Hundreds of outraged locals took to the streets after the rape of eight models ambushed by a gang while filming a music video in Krugersdorp, Johannesburg.
Women aged 19 to 37 were raped up to 10 times each
The horror case that rocked South Africa has sparked outrage, calling for chemical castration of convicted sex offenders.
And the fury escalated after Police Minister Bheki Cele said one of the victims was “lucky to have been raped once”.
He said on live television: “A woman has been raped by ten different men.
“That’s eight, that’s six, that’s four, that’s three.
“The 19-year-old – if he’s lucky – was raped by one man, not many men.”
His comments sparked outrage among South Africans with the DA calling for him to be sacked.
The horrific incident led protesters to clash with police in the town of West Rand, where 126 people were arrested.
Protesters threw rocks and bottles at the police and the police returned fire with rubber bullets.
South Africa has the third highest rape figures in the world.
The brutal attack took place on July 28 at an unused mine in Krugersdorp, where the Red Button production team was filming a gospel music video.
The models and crew were ambushed by an armed group of “illegal” miners, known as zama zamas.
After ordering everyone to lie down, the men began taking the women one by one into the bushes to gang-rap them.
The gang also took away their cell phones, jewelry, bags, cash and video equipment.
The women’s nightmare lasted for hours with some being raped as many as ten times while the men in the crew were stripped naked and held at gunpoint.
Two sisters aged 19 and 21 who accepted a £15-a-day job as a model in a music video reveal in detail the horrific moments they endured at the hands of their abusers me.
Nomboniso, 19, whose name has been changed, told local newspaper City Press: “We were very excited when a local girl who runs a modeling agency told us about the photo shoot and promised with we each 300 Rs (£15) on a farm in Krugersdorp.
“Then we decided to shoot another part at a mine and it was so beautiful when we were about to shoot the last scene, the men started running at us firing shots in the air.
“They ordered everyone to lie down and more people ran out and they all had guns and they started searching us, taking our phones, our clothes and our cameras.”
She went on to explain how the men dragged them into a car and raped them while her sister said the men threatened to kill her if she didn’t do as they said.
She added: ‘It was a very traumatic experience lasting about four hours for all the girls and one of the women was raped in front of us.
Another rape victim said she tried to hide in a tree for an hour but to no avail – she was raped by four men.
The woman whose modeling agency organized a group of eight women to shoot the music video of rising star Malvery Martin said she gave herself to the gang to save the girls.
“Parents trust me and every time I go out, they expect me to take care of their children,” she said.
“I blame myself if it weren’t for me these girls wouldn’t be there.
“I feel responsible and want to take all the pain so they don’t touch the girls.”
She added that older men holding on would “force” younger men to rape them.
Victims will be tested for HIV and sexually transmitted diseases, counseled and returned to their families in Johannesburg.
The case sparked a large-scale police operation involving hundreds of armed officers, dogs, planes, drones and helicopters.
Police are searching for those responsible for 32 rapes of 8 girls and armed robbery.
About 142 arrests were made but none related to gang rapes.
President Cyril Ramaphosa ordered Police Minister Cele to come down with an iron fist saying: “The perpetrators of this crime must be caught and dealt with”.
The zama zamas are known to be terrorists, raping and robbing locals while they reopen old mines that have been closed to find missed gold.
A major police operation is underway and it is believed that armed rapists and robbers were among those arrested but have so far not been identified.
A South African Police Department source said: “Normally, when an illegal immigrant is discovered, they are deported but due to national outrage an example would have to be given. .
“The punishment should act as a deterrent to prevent others from crossing our borders.”
How can you get help?
Women’s Aid offers this advice to victims and their families:
- Always keep your phone nearby.
- Contact charities for help, including the Women’s Aid live chat helpline and services like SupportLine.
- If you are in danger, call 999.
- Familiarize yourself with Silent Solution, report abuse without talking on the phone, dial “55” instead.
- Always keep some money with you, including change to buy public phones or bus fare.
- If you suspect your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a less risky area of the house – for example, where there is an exit and access to the phone.
- Avoid kitchens and garages where there may be knives or other weapons. Avoid rooms where you can get trapped, such as the bathroom or where you might be locked into a closet or other small space.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse, SupportLine is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 6pm to 8pm on 01708 765200. The charity’s email support service is open to weekdays and weekends during a crisis – email@example.com.
Women’s Aid offers live chat – available weekdays from 8am – 6pm and weekends from 10am – 6pm.
You can also call the 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on the toll-free number 0808 2000 247.