In a country where one in four women is raped and where months-old babies and 94-year-old grandmothers are sexually assaulted, citizens are demanding action after a teenager was gang-raped, sliced open from her stomach to her genitals, and left for dead on a construction site last week.
The 17-year-old lived long enough to identify one of her attackers, a 22-year-old. Police arrested him and yesterday said they have arrested a second suspect, aged 21. They promised more arrests soon.
"Kill them!" and "Cut off their penises," were some of the demands voiced on talk show radio stations yesterday.
Every few months this African nation with the highest rate of rapes of babies and young girls in the world yells its outrage at a particularly brutal attack.
Last year, South Africans were shocked when village boys gang-raped a mentally ill 17-year-old with a mental age of 4. She was attacked by six boys, the youngest who was 10, in a crime that only came to light because the boys made a cellphone video of the rape and posted it on the Internet. It went viral.
Professor Rachel Jewkes, a doctor heading the Women's Research Unit of South Africa's Medical Research Council, said 37 per cent of surveyed men in South Africa's most populated province of Gauteng said they had raped a woman or child, according to a study. Seventy-five per cent of them first raped a teenager, she said.