Call for neighbours to report domestic abuse: Covid-19 lockdown

Lindiwe Zulu has called on communities to look out for their neighbours and report any suspicious activity at a neighbour's house.
Lindiwe Zulu has called on communities to look out for their neighbours and report any suspicious activity at a neighbour's house.
Image: TREVOR SAMSON

Social development minister Lindiwe Zulu has urged communities to report incidents of violence and abuse against women and children during the lockdown.

The country will at midnight on Thursday go into a lockdown for 21 days.

Zulu said during an eNCA interview that her department welcomed police minister Bheki Cele's decision to prohibit the sale of alcohol during the lockdown.

“We welcome the decision. We appreciate and understand exactly what happens when people consume a lot of alcohol and go home.”

She called on communities to report it if they hear something violent happening at a neighbour's house.

“We are calling on all organisations that  do work around gender-based violence to continue their work.

“The fact that we are in a lockdown, the fact that coronavirus is our focus, does not mean we must  lose sight of the violence against women and children.

“It is a South African scourge and it is important for us to continue fighting, irrespective of what we are going through,” Zulu said.

Community members and those who suffer from gender-based violence can contact the GBV call command number on 0800428428.

Zulu said her department was  gearing up to make sure homeless people were given shelter to curb the spread of Covid-19.

“The homeless are also human beings. This is a time for us to show compassion to them. The homeless will be fed during the lockdown period,” Zulu said.

“We are talking to provinces and areas where the number of homeless people is high. We've called on MECs to work with other departments to assist the homeless. We need to give them dignity. They are also susceptible to catching the virus if we are not able to take care of them.

“This is a time to look into our system for the future. Today is coronavirus, tomorrow it might be something else. There is a need for us to sustain the work we are doing now,” said Zulu.

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