Ms Thandi Nontenja
UDEMWO Secretary General

Since the start of the Tim Omotoso trial, the past few days have been nothing but the most unbearable time for women in South Africa. It is so overwhelming to witness the young and brave rape survivor, Cheryl Zondi being grilled in the manner that the defence Advocate Peter Daubermann did. In our view, his morals and ethics are questionable.

The United Democratic Movement Women’s Organisation (UDEMWO) views Daubermann as heartless and would do anything to promote the rape and abuse towards women. He seemingly has no conscience whatsoever. In as much as we respect the justice system, we believe that he crossed the line in so many ways with the questions he continued to ask Zondi. The victims have borne so much already; to be questioned as if they enjoyed what happened to them is not acceptable.

Daubermann cannot be allowed to make fun of such an unfortunate situation. We commend Cheryl for her bravery and if we keep quiet about the manner in which she was treated in court we will be failing, not only her, but all the affected victims.

UDEMWO rallies behind the Commission for Gender Equality’s decision to approach the judiciary and the General Council of the Bar regarding the unfair treatment of rape victims in court.

This matter could have been handled better. UDEMWO strongly believes that many women will rather not report cases of abuse due to the treatment victims get in court. We continue to commend the bravery shown by all the witnesses in this case. We still maintain and believe that this case is strong enough for those involved to face the wrath of justice.

We call upon the men in collar to show support to the victims in this case. The time has come that the wolves in sheep’s clothing be exposed. We have been calling upon our government to thoroughly screen these so-called men of God. This issue must be taken seriously.

Issued by:
Thandi Nontenja
UDEMWO Secretary General