When abusers are not reported to the police immediately, they become emboldened, Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko said on Thursday.
“This nation needs to talk to itself on how best it wants to proceed, as there can never be a policeman or woman in every household,” he said in a speech prepared for delivery at the opening of a revamped police station in Plettenberg Bay, Western Cape.
Nhleko was referring a man shooting his wife in the Parkview police station, in Johannesburg, on Tuesday morning.
Lana Marques and Gabriel da Silva had gone to the police station’s client service centre to report a domestic violence dispute.
Da Silva, 47, left the station briefly, claiming he needed to fetch his reading glasses from the car while they were filling out forms. He returned with a gun and shot Marques dead before killing himself.
Nhleko urged South Africans to say “enough is enough”.
“This also means that an abuser should be reported as soon as possible. Clearly this was not the first ever altercation but just a continuation that migrated from their home to the police station.
“Abusers are emboldened if they are not reported. Report abusers,” he urged.
He said if police failed to act, people should report them to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate.
“Hold the police accountable and demand that they respond to your needs. Otherwise, this police station and many others are just empty shells,” he said. SAPA