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Cabinet Approves Minimum Mandatory 15-year Jail Term For Rape Convicts

Cabinet Approves Minimum Mandatory 15-year Jail Term For Rape Convicts

Cabinet has approved amendments to the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act to introduce stiff penalties for perpetrators of sexual violence with those convicted of rape or aggravated indecent assault now facing minimum mandatory 15-year jail terms.

Rapists will be sentenced to life imprisonment or “any definite period of imprisonment of not less than 15 years”, The Sunday Mail reported citing the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Bill. Reads the Bill:

Section 65 (“Rape”) (4) of the principal Act is amended by the repeal of paragraph (b) and the substitution of – (b) he knows that she has not consented to it or realises that there is a real risk or possibility that she may not have consented to it; shall be guilty of rape and liable to – if the crime was committed in aggravating circumstances, to life imprisonment or any definite period of imprisonment of not less than fifteen years; or if there are no aggravating circumstances, to life imprisonment or imprisonment for a period of not more than 15 years.

For the avoidance of doubt if — the crime was committed in aggravating circumstances as described in Section 65 (2), the convicted person shall be sentenced to life imprisonment or any definite period of imprisonment of not less than fifteen years; or there are no aggravating circumstances, to life imprisonment or imprisonment for a period of not more than 15 years.

Authorities initially considered much stiffer mandatory penalties of up to 60 years but settled on a mandatory sentence less severe than those imposed on murderers.

Presently, the criminal code does not provide for a mandatory sentence for rape or aggravated indecent assault, which is defined as the sexual penetration of a victim, including men, without consent.

The development comes after the release of report on rape which indicates that an average of 22 women filed rape cases daily between January 2020 and December 2021.

Police also claim more than 16 000 cases of rape were reported in the two years to December 2021, with 7 377 and 8 715 women reporting in 2020 and 2021, respectively.

The Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act considers performing sexual or anal intercourse with a female person without her consent as rape.

As part of the ongoing reform programme, the authorities are considering raising the statute of limitations — the time limit for filing charges against an alleged offender — for sexual offences to 40 years.

Section 23 of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act presently sets the prescriptive period for reporting offences such as rape at 20 years.

The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Health and Child Care chairperson, Dr Ruth Labode, welcomed the proposed amendments. She said:

It is a welcome move, but we need to ensure that girls can access contraceptives, and we must not allow a nine-year-old to carry a pregnancy to full term. Such pregnancies must be terminated.

The Padare/Enkundleni Men’s Forum acting director (programmes development and fundraising manager), Dr Thando Makubaza, said deterrent penalties will send a clear message to would-be offenders.

Ten years is the minimum mandatory sentence for rape in the SADC region.

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25 Comments

Vesto 2 months ago

I wish our Old People's Home government would show the same resolve when dealing with corruption, the cancer that has consumed this country.

I can see the same mandatory sentences being proposed under the Patriotic Bill, but there will be plenty of foot dragging in dealing with corruption.

Skewed priorities?


VYBZ KARTEL 2 months ago

Rubbish🚮

VYBZ KARTEL 2 months ago

Speaking of corruption where is the bulletproof car?

Vesto 2 months ago

@VYBZ, the vehicle you go on about was never purchased using taxpayers money, so there is no corruption to talk about.

Secondly for anything to be criminal there has to be a complainant, of which you are not because you did not contribute. At Law you have no Locus Standi.

So belt up

Tintin 2 months ago

inini nebabez rangu takudananira munaFirst Street munhu wese achitiona...paipa.


mbinga yekuBhinga 2 months ago

😂😂😂 nhasi makacharger mudhara.cool jokes

ichii!! 2 months ago

the same 15yrs should be applied to women who claim to have been raped ivo vasina


Sir Zimbabwe 2 months ago

@ichii!!, say that again 👀👀

Manikiniki 2 months ago

Yes i agree what have u set as the minimum sentence for those women and girls who lie about rape. This should be addressed as a matter of urgency because women use this as a weapon to fight against innocent men who end up spending years in prison for a non existance crime.

2 months ago

Most people vakufira mhosvaa dzisidzavo


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Shashi waLevels 2 months ago

varume vanorepa mukati ngaapinzwe mukati uyo


ree 2 months ago

rapists anongoda life in prison zvatopera


wise 2 months ago

murume anoda kungobciswa ichocho chinonetsa


mama Bee 2 months ago

ko varikunyepera varume kut andi raper achagarawo makore mangani kune varikupikira mhosva dzisiri dzavo uku


Maparamuro 2 months ago

Let them rot in prison


Trev 2 months ago

Exactly, ngavapihwe life sentence ndoyavo kana death sentence chaiyo

mtt 2 months ago

that dont deter anyone ukaba mombe 9 years per herd apa vanhu varikungodzidashura mombe dzacho

Bright 2 months ago

15 mashoma dai vati 45 yaa


Turoo 2 months ago

Marapist ngaafire kujeri😠


Jah 🇿🇼 Tsvarie-07 2 months ago

Thumbs up my government 👍...


Joker🃏 2 months ago

Rape shud b considered as performing ****ual or anal intercourse with a female person without her consent.....not jx wif women cz ndakamborepwa nevakadz


Big$ 2 months ago

Even mukati 💯 yrs ,,bhoo


5 2 months ago

It sounds like rape is confined to men only yet there are some cases of females ****ually abusing males


ndoza the freezer ndoza the razer 2 months ago

is that fair. I am not defending the rapist .I feel like this not fair it's like they they are saying man down. lot of people who have energy will be sent to prison


Taliban 2 months ago

notros vanayo ma mp avo vapedza kutsotsonya vana vaisa mutemo Kuma Getto youths



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