On August 1, thousands of women and gender nonconforming people took to the streets for #TheTotalShutdown protest against SA’s horrific culture of gender-based violence and femicide. Marches took place in 19 SA cities as well as in Lesotho and Namibia and the marchers presented a memorandum of 24 demands — one for each year since our young democracy was founded in 1994. "Our aim is to demand that the state must do everything within its powers to enable us to realise our right to be free from violence, whether it emanates from public or private sources," the memorandum reads. According to Stats SA’s Crime Against Women in SA released in May, about 38 out of every 100,000 women were raped during 2016-17. About 80% of the sexual assaults reported in the 2016-17 crime statistics were rapes, of which 68.5% of the victims were female. Facebook group SA also excels at murder. According to the World Health Organisation the SA femicide rate in 2016 was 12.1 per 100,000, five times higher tha...

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